Hospice Compassus of the Rim Country has been serving the area for 20 years in one form or another. Throughout that time its volunteers and staff have made a great effort to educate the public and medical community about what it does.
“Many people still don’t know about it and what it does,” said Mary Jane Rogers, executive director of Hospice Compassus.
“There are lots of misconceptions,” added Kathleen Hughes, who does much of the outreach for Hospice.
Rogers said only 23 percent of Medicare beneficiaries who are in need of Hospice services take advantage of them. These services are the only ones for which Medicare will pay 100 percent of the cost, she said.
Hospice helps those with life-limiting illnesses live their final stage of life the way in which they want, Rogers said.
Each client is given an individual plan of care designed by the patient (if they are capable), their family and doctor and the staff of Hospice.
Anyone can get help from Hospice in assessing their needs. An individual does not have to have an actual diagnosis of a terminal illness or condition. And anyone can make a referral to Hospice.
For instance, the family of an older individual — or a neighbor — may notice they are not doing as well as they used to. Perhaps they don’t get out of the house much or are sleeping more, have lost weight or have minor problems with their memory.
The family or friend can contact Hospice and staff will visit with the individual and make a non-invasive, non-intrusive assessment of what they could use to improve the quality of their life. Those needs could be related to their health; social or emotional issues; or spiritual. The assessment can help find what the individual’s family caregivers need as well.
The assessment is done at no charge.
Hospice care may not be needed, but maybe Meals on Wheels or another service would be of benefit. Hospice social workers can make the calls to get those other services in place.
Hospice Compassus is inviting residents of Payson and the Rim Country to come to an open house to learn more.
The open house will be from 5 p.m. to 7 p.m., Tuesday, Nov. 9 at Hospice House, 511 S. Mud Springs Road, Payson. There will be tours of the facility, refreshments and door prizes.
To make sure there is enough food, Hospice is requesting guests to call (928) 472-6340.