Hospice - It's about living, not dying
December 26, 2012
Hospice touches the lives of those left behind
"They're such neat people – like a team of love. They're amazing people to be partners with."
These were Le Sueur’s Mary Scott Riviere's comments after her experience with Mayo Health Systems' hospice services when her mother, Rose Mary Scott, passed away earlier this year. Her mother was an avid golfer and practiced yoga. She was diagnosed with a rare thyroid cancer which took her life in a matter of weeks.
"There's a misconception that hospice comes in and helps you die," Scott Riviere said recently. "But actually, it helps you live. We were thinking to ourselves, 'Now what?' but there was this huge support team to help us navigate each new step. They answered our questions and gave us information we didn't even know to ask.”
Scott Riviere said the family really appreciated hospice overseeing Rose Mary's medications and the special bed that was brought in to her home.
Katha Chamberlain, Le Sueur, relied on hospice care for her mother. "The care she received was so remarkable," Chamberlain recalled. "The volunteers were really something - they are amazing people. My mother was home the entire time.”
Chamberlain also relied on hospice care with her grandmother, aunt, father-in-law and mother-in-law. Dispelling the myth that hospice is only for cancer patients, one of Chamberlain's family members had congestive heart failure and another had a stroke.
“Hospice does such a good job of training,” she said. “They have a vision of helping and transition.”
Chamberlain is currently on the Hospice Board of Le Sueur. Her experiences with hospice have given her a unique perspective.
Chamberlain added that the hospice program needs volunteers. She hopes the baby boom generation gets more involved. Hospice is grateful to those who donate dollars and to families who leave a portion of their estate to hospice.
With funding, dedicated volunteers and a specialized team of care-givers, Mayo Health Systems and hospice programs around the country have the opportunity to help patients live each day to the fullest. Hospice is not a place, but more of a philosophy of care. The hospice team provides medical, emotional and spiritual care – not just for the patient, but for the family as well.
If you know someone who might benefit from Hospice services, wish to volunteer, or are interested in making a financial contribution, please contact Mayo Health System Hospice at (507) 385-2618; or toll-free, 1-800-321-2721 (extension 2618).
Read the three other hospice articles: