Sharp HospiceCare understands the emotional, mental and physical exhaustion of having a loved one in hospice. The hospice experience is not one that is handled alone — there is a community of caregivers willing and ready to support those in hospice, as well as family who may also be caring for them.
Even during the COVID-19 pandemic, where feelings of isolation can worsen an already stressful scenario, Sharp HospiceCare has continued to provide community-based care in a way that keeps patients and families safe, while still supporting their needs. This includes following federal guidelines for patient and staff safety, and expanding the use of technology with video-conferencing visits (televisits) between patients and hospice caregivers.
“Our spiritual care team is making regular contact with patients and their families to ensure continuity in socialization, and to let them know that we still care and are there for them,” says Suzi K. Johnson, vice president of Sharp HospiceCare. “Nursing continues regular visits via televisits and will make home visits based on complex patient needs. We even have volunteers who grocery shop for families who cannot get out due to age, transportation or other limitations. Groceries are left at the door, so volunteers do not have direct contact with patients and families to practice social distancing, while still being there for them during this delicate time.”
Each one of Sharp HospiceCare’s caregivers has a special reason about why they chose a career in hospice, some having been in the same position as the families they serve. Watch the video to get a deeper perspective about the village of caregivers — from hospice aides to bereavement counselors — who support patients and their families through these difficult times.