Hospice of Michigan

Regrets Spoken at End-of-Life Hospice of Michigan more than managing physical challenges

July 16, 2015 // 0 Comments

  I wish I would have made amends with my sister. We always said wed get married we just never got around to it. I always said Id finish my degree when I had more time. Now time is running out. Regrets. While many try to live without them, they have a way of creeping up but it doesn’t have to be too late to rid your life of regret. Marnie Squire, social worker with Hospice of Michigan, explains that its often not until patients begin hospice care that they examine their life and want to right any wrongs. Working through regrets at the end of life can be an important part of dying a peaceful death, Squire says. Hospice is about more than just the physical pain; its about the emotional pain, too. Patients often need to work through that before they’re ready to let go. When Hospice of Michigan begins working with a new patient, the team asks if the patient has any regrets and when regrets are shared, HOM makes addressing them a priority. This often involves all members of the hospice team: the doctor, nurse, social worker, aide, chaplain and volunteers. We’ve planned a lot of weddings, Squire recalls. We’ve planned baptisms, held ceremonies to honor veterans and have been a peacemaker between family members all in an attempt to fulfill last wishes, rid the patient of regret and provide the opportunity to die a peaceful death. Squire explains that a common regret is a rift with a family member or friend. When people die, they often want to feel like they’re leaving the world without feelings of contempt. When people realize they’re nearing the end-of-life, its common to look at past disagreements differently and reconsider the decision to cut ties with a loved one, Squire said. We do our best to help with this. We talk with the patient and family and determine if it’s appropriate to reach out the estranged family member or friend with a phone call. If the patient can no longer communicate, it might be as simple as holding the phone up to the patients ear and letting the person on the other line talk to them. If a call isn’t appropriate, we can help the patient […]

New focus on West Michigan in Hospice of Michigan changes

December 15, 2011 // 0 Comments

Hospice of Michigan (HOM) is returning to its roots in Grand Rapids with leadership changes designed to better respond to West Michigan needs and to expand awareness of the organization’s end-of-life services. The statewide group will shift greater authority in the West Michigan region to the Ada-based regional headquarters and to the new post of executive director, to be held by Marcie M. Hillary of Grand Rapids. The office will operate under the new title of Hospice of Michigan/West Michigan. Hillary, who presently serves as vice president of community relations for HOM, will provide executive leadership for the West Michigan program which already oversees care for nearly 200 adult and pediatric patients daily in the region and is a partner with other health-care providers in the region, including with Michigan State University’s College of Human Medicine in development of a new physician fellowship in end of life care. As West Michigan executive director, she will have increased flexibility and authority to engage with other regional leaders, with donors and with hospitals and other patient-care organizations. “Our board members and community leaders in West Michigan felt strongly that we wanted to intensify our efforts to build awareness of Hospice of Michigan services to everyone in this growing part of the state,” said John Maurer, M.D., chair of the HOM Board of Trustees. “This isn’t about the care we provide. We’ve been leading the way for more than 30 years in that area. It’s about getting our message out, having greater locally based decision-making and about thinking more strategically with others in the West Michigan healthcare field about managing end-of-life issues.” “Marcie has been part of our team for 14 years,” said Maurer, “and she understands intimately how we can make end-of-life more comfortable, more peaceful and less stressful for patients and their families.” HOM, serving 54 counties in Lower Michigan, grew out of the former Hospice of Greater Grand Rapids, which was founded in 1981 and is the original hospice in West Michigan. In 1994, HOM was born from the merger of the Grand Rapids agency with other community based programs throughout the Lower Peninsula. It is the second oldest hospice in the United States, the largest in Michigan and maintains a nonprofit, open-access policy of […]