Learn About Comforts Of Hospice Compassus


Hoping to get the word out before it’s too late, Hospice Compassus will hold an open house today from 3 to 6 p.m. at 511 S. Mud Springs Road, Payson.

“Often our patients are referred to us too late,” said Mary Jane Rogers, executive director of Hospice Compassus in Payson.

“Studies have shown that a patient has a longer life expectancy with us than without.”

She said the patient and their families make all the decisions about the care they receive from the team assigned to their case.

“Hospice is a service, not a place. We make every effort to keep people where they are happy and where they are loved and try to make sure they have as much normalcy as possible,” she said.

The open house will also provide an opportunity to learn about the Hospice Compassus commitment of “Keeping the Promise.” Attendees can also meet staff and enjoy light refreshments.

The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services is scheduled to release a set of hospice quality measures in 2012, and hospice programs will be required to publicly report on the measures in 2014. Hospice Compassus has voluntarily tracked its own quality data since January 2011, meaning the company will be able to report on a full three years of meaningful quality data by the time other hospice programs are required to report by CMS.

The primary quality indicators in Keeping the Promise are patients’ pain levels and the education they receive regarding medication, treatment and symptoms.

“Hospice providers serve in a clinical and compassionate role that is very important yet drastically underutilized in the continuum of care,” said Dr. Paul Gilbert, medical director of Hospice Compassus Payson.

More than 1 million people in the U.S. receive hospice care each year, although as many as 50 percent of those who have the option of hospice care never access the benefits. A study of the non-hospice end-of-life experiences reported that 40 percent of patients were in severe pain prior to their death, and 25 percent experienced moderate to great anxiety or depression before they died.

Hospice Compassus will carry out its National Quality Care Initiative with continuous action in Payson and more than 50 other community-based hospice programs across the U.S., and through support and reinforcement from company management.

The day after the open house, Janine Affeldt, Hospice Compassus bereavement coordinator, will lead a program on surviving the holidays after the loss of a loved one.

Hospice Compassus and Payson Messinger Mortuary are hosting a two-hour interactive group session that will explore specific ways to manage the holiday season while in the midst of grief. There is no charge for participation.

The program will be presented from 2 p.m. to 4 p.m., Wednesday, Nov. 9, in the Community Room of Messinger Mortuary, 901 S. Westerly.


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