Our Hospice of South Central Indiana provides a form of care designed to help each patient with a life-limiting illness live as well as possible in the time they have left.
“We are here to help make every moment in each patient’s life as full and beautiful as possible for as long as possible,” said Suzie Singer, manager of planning and marketing.
Our Hospice is licensed to provide care to terminally-ill patients. It is a community-based 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization. Donations play an integral role in its ability to provide services. Our Hospice is certified by Medicare and Medicaid.
“We serve an average of 180 patients daily across 15 counties. We have a staff of 149 professionals and employees and another 150 volunteers,” Singer said.
A majority of patients entering hospice care are cancer patients who are no longer responding to medical treatment. Any patient with a medical determination of less than six months to live is eligible for care with Our Hospice.
Individuals with life-limiting illnesses who are patients in hospitals, assisted living facilities, in-patient facilities and private home care are eligible to be accepted into Our Hospice care.
Our Hospice has offices in Columbus, North Vernon and Greensburg.
The largest facility stands near Columbus Regional Hospital, at 2626 17th St. The building houses an in-patient treatment center, amenities, meeting rooms and the primary administrative offices for Our Hospice operations.
The in-patient treatment facility in Columbus is the only in-patient facility currently operated by Our Hospice.
“We prefer our patients remain in their own home environment for as long as possible. That also seems to be what most patients want. We use the in-patient facility for temporary situations,” said registered nurse Kathy Smith.
Our Hospice care includes medical care under a doctor’s orders, nurse visits, pain and symptom control, patient personal care, coordination of medical equipment and supplies, counseling, care-taking education and more.
“Care here is not just physical. It is a kind of holistic care that includes the physical, mental, spiritual and social care of the patient and also emotional and spiritual support and care of the patient’s family,” Smith said.
The Our Hospice form of care was originally organized by seven private citizens in 1978. Funded by corporate and community donations, the philosophy and functioning of the organization was so successful that it spread and grew from county to county.
By 1995, efforts began to expand services and build a larger building for patient and administrative uses. The large facility near the hospital was opened in 2004.
Our Hospice of South Central Indiana is the largest hospice care organization in the state of Indiana.
— compiled by Cecelia Ellis, for The Republic