Memphis Clinical Director Vicki Noble, RN, CHPN decided to pursue a degree in nursing after spending nearly decade in retail management. “Both of my parents owned small businesses, and I did love the job, until one day I didn't love it anymore. I wanted to see if my brain still worked, so I took a class in medical terminology on a whim.”
Regina Holliday became an advocate for patient after the death of her husband, Frederick Allen Holliday II. His struggle to get appropriate care occurred over 11 weeks of continuous hospitalization at five different facilities. Today’s blog, reprinted with permission, was originally posted toRegina Holliday’s Medical Advocacy Blog in September 2011.
Today, once again, I was waiting in a line at an airport.
Acts of kindness are as steeped in holiday tradition as eggnog and carolers, but the compassion of a dedicated individual can stand out as a shining example of selflessness, even in a season dedicated to giving. Bob Wertenberger, a Crossroads patient in Foxwood Springs, has such compassion. When asked to plan his “Gift of a Day,” a day that patients can spend however they want, Wertenberger chose to do something he’s done his whole life – give back.
It comes on suddenly: a burst of irritability and depression. You lose your sense of humor and ability to concentrate. You feel emotionally empty–like you’ve hit a brick wall. And sometimes, you’re angry and frustrated by all the things and people in your life, including the loved ones who need you most.
“Hospice has a stigma because it comes at the end of life, but it’s really an acceptance of the end of life. We’re all connected to it. We will all eventually die. My experience with hospice made me want to live a better life and do the things I’ve been afraid to do.” — Molly Jones, volunteer
When someone you love is terminally ill and on life support, the decision to remove them from a ventilator is a difficult one. Most patients are on a ventilator because they have difficulty breathing, and families are very fearful that removing life support will cause their loved one to experience discomfort—or worse, to gasp for air. The truth is that if the ventilator withdrawal is managed well, the patient should not experience any of those.
Sarah Giron, the Crossroads of Cincinnati Hospice Hospital Liaison states, “Transitioning a patient home to prepare for a vent withdrawal is a process accomplished only by teamwork.”