Blog: Hospice & Palliative Care Insights - 2014

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Shifting the Focus to Quality of Life

One of the hardest moments for a healthcare professional can be the realization that a patient under their care will not be cured. The circumstances of terminal disease mean at some point it may become appropriate to deliberately end aggressive treatments and continual rehospitalizations, and shift the focus of care to improving the quality of the patient’s remaining time. Too often, healthcare professionals see this as a failure on their part and are resistant to having a conversation with their patients about the inevitable fact that they are coming to the end of their lives. However, accepting this — and tailoring a care plan that helps ensure a patient’s remaining time is as serene and meaningful as possible — is often the greatest service a physician can provide.
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Round Dancing Gift Moves Former Instructor

Elaine Snowden loves nothing more than “rounding,” a choreographed style of ballroom dance in which a caller announces steps to pairs as they perform in unison. The 85-year-old used to be an instructor and has had a lifetime love for the elegant, synchronized movements. As a hospice patient in Germantown, Tennessee, Snowden is now confined to a wheelchair and has difficulty communicating, but is still well-known within the Memphis round dancing community.
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Volunteer Delivers Smiles

“Making people smile is my passion,” says Crossroads Hospice volunteer Donnita Humphrey. It’s a job she does well.

Donnita first became familiar with Crossroads through her knitting group. Tasked with finding three facilities to carry the items the group knitted, we were lucky enough to be on the receiving end of their beautiful work.
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From Behind the Scenes, Eraina Buie Makes an Impact

It’s easy to see the difference the field staff at Crossroads Hospice makes on patients and their families. Nurses work to alleviate pain, social workers and chaplains have face-to-face conversations to provide support, and physicians consult closely to develop care plans. What may go unnoticed, at times, is the work being done every day by the people behind these frontline team members. The people who work just as hard, with just as much commitment to serving patients. People like Eraina Buie.
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Patient’s Gift of a Day Drives Him Down Memory Lane

Donald Gatling spent 17 years traveling back and forth across the country as an long-haul truck driver. He always felt life on the open road made him free. In 2010, he was diagnosed with ALS and his wife, Angie, began riding with him to ensure his safety. Last year, he had to give up his passion and career of truck driving.
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