Earlier this week, we spent some time at Alive Hospice to help them take down their Christmas lights. We got all bundled up and had a great time. After all, the team that volunteers together, stays together.
This is the second year we've been able to help Alive with this task, and we hope to make it an annual tradition. Below you'll find a Q&A with their communications manager that may give you a deeper understanding of hospice care.
Although we invent technology for home health and hospice providers, we are not a technology company. We’re a healthcare company.
What I mean by that is, we do not measure our effectiveness by our technology—no matter how robust and feature-loaded it may be. We measure our effectiveness by how many patients we positively affect.
So we’re always in tune with the patient and care provider’s needs, we commemorate our product launches (we're currently launching Medalogix Nurture) with a visit to a healthcare setting.
While at Alive, I had an opportunity to chat with their communications manager, Jared Porter, about Alive’s history, the importance of hospice care and much more. Here’s a recap of our conversation:
Q: When people think of hospice, they think of death. Why “Alive” Hospice?
A: The name “Alive Hospice” was chosen because it so perfectly describes who we are in just two words. It’s true that hospice care enters the picture during the last months of life, but the last months of life are not just about dying. They’re about living fully and meaningfully, being surrounded by the people they love and, whenever possible, doing the things they enjoy doing. Every moment counts, and they should be lived to the fullest. That’s what we help patients do every day.
Q: I hear Alive has a pretty rich history. Can you tell us a little bit about it?
A: We really do. We recently unveiled a history timeline at our Alive Hospice Residence Nashville on Patterson Street, and it shows what a proud place we have in the history of the U.S. hospice movement and what an impact we’ve made over the years. In fact, we were one of the nation’s earliest hospice programs. Alive Hospice was founded right here in Middle Tennessee in 1975, just one year after the nation’s first hospice opened in Connecticut. We were the first hospice provider in the state of Tennessee and in the Southeast, and we’re the third or fourth oldest hospice in the nation.
Q: I’ve heard of interesting programs like pet therapy for hospice patients. Do you all offer that or other innovative therapy approaches at Alive?
A: There are so many things we do to put smiles on our patients’ faces at Alive Hospice. Imagine meeting a Border Terrier named Rafe at our Alive Hospice Residence Nashville facility! You can’t help but smile when he comes in the room, wagging that tail and giving kisses to those who want them. He comes every week with his two humans, Lee and Jim, who are two of the kindest people you could ever hope to meet.
We also have a fantastic music therapy program with a certified music therapist who visits patients at our two inpatient facilities each week. She brings her gifts of vocal and instrumental music to our patients, which is something else a person might not expect when they enter hospice care. But there’s nothing like live music at your bedside, and we have many volunteers who visit and share their gifts: a cellist with the Nashville Symphony one day, singers/songwriters with the Musicians On Call program another day. There’s also the Threshold Choir, a wonderful group of women who sing lullabies to patients of all ages.
These are only a few things you’ll find with Alive Hospice. It’s not something people expect, and when they find out about the things we offer, it’s a very pleasant surprise. As I said before, what we do is help people live fully and meaningfully.
Q: Anything else you'd like to add?
A: Thanks again for talking with me about Alive Hospice! We always welcome questions and encourage our Middle Tennessee community to find out more about how we can help. Just visit our website at www.AliveHospice.org or call us at 615-327-1085 for more information. We’re always here.
Photo credit: flickr