Thursday, August 6, 2015

'Tis the Season To Be Giving

Christmas in July         

Medi Home Health & Hospice Offers Donations in Support of Community

This July Santa Clause delivered in the form of Medi staff members! In the spirit of generosity and giving, Medi Home Health & Hospice in Petersburg, Charlottesville, and Richmond, VA collected and donated everyday items to help families going through difficult times.  Canned goods and personal care items of all sorts were brought in by Medi staff to create special gift baskets.  Health care workers and physicians in the community who Medi partners with were then asked to submit stories of families who would benefit from receiving a gift basket. Hopefully this act served as a welcome relief to a family in a time of need. Pay compassion forward and help make the world a bit easier for someone else.

We wish blessings to all and all a good night!

Donations offered by Medi Home Health & Hospice to help a family in need.
The Medi Richmond office's donations from staff.

Gift baskets created for Charlottesville families in need.

Medi Home Health & Hospice of Charlottesville was featured on

Check out the article here: Christmas in July from Medi Home Health and Hospice in Charlottesville

Have ideas on how to give back to the community? Looking for a volunteer opportunity? Please call Medi Home Health & Hospice at 804-282-4301 and ask to speak to the Volunteer Coordinator today!

Friday, July 17, 2015

We Honor Veterans Level 3 Partner

Medi Home Health & Hospice is proud to announce we have become a Level 3 partner of the We Honor Veterans program. Our staff has worked tirelessly over the last several years to recognize and honor veterans in our community with ongoing outreach and programming. Throughout this journey we have met and honored many veterans from all walks of life.

It is with a great deal of gratitude we thank those who helped make this happen, especially the veterans in the community who allowed us to recognize them.  In some cases you allowed us into your homes or your place of residence to share your stories and struggles with us. These are the kinds of moments we will never forget as hospice workers, so thank you.  We would also like to thank the healthcare organizations in the community who worked with us and made this achievement possible.


We Honor Veterans is a program that seeks to honor those who previously served in the military. The program's mission is to recognize veterans for their service, promote a compassionate message of understanding towards the veteran community, and educate others on specific issues veterans may face at the end of life.

The program is a partnership between the Department of Veteran Affairs, the NHPCO, hospices, healthcare providers in the community, and various veteran-centric organizations.  The program requires that ongoing recognition and educational activities be completed in order to be a partner and progress through the 4 Levels of We Honor Veterans. The staff at Medi Home Health & Hospice eagerly continues the work for promoting this cause. Educating our community and caring for veterans is responsibility we take seriously. It is the kind of work that does not end with an achievement or recognition. It is our goal going forward that we continue to promote a message of positivity and provide the quality care that our veterans deserve.

For more information on the We Honor Veterans program, please visit  If you are a current military service member or a veteran who would like to help this cause, please contact the Medi Hospice Volunteer Coordinator at (804) 201-7335 to find out how you can volunteer to visit with veterans at the end of their life, providing support to them and their families.

Monday, June 15, 2015

Celebrating CNA's

The week of June 12th through 19th marks the yearly celebration of National Nursing Assistant week. Each year millions of certified Nursing Aides work hard to provide hands-on care for those who are not able to provide care for themselves. This can be a difficult job which requires much patience and  compassion.

Medi Hospice serving the Petersburg, Richmond, and Charlottesville areas provides CNA care to patients and families who are receptive to it. When an individual is admitted to hospice services, they have a choice to receive visits from a CNA up to three times per week.  Medi CNA's display the most caring, compassionate care that south and central Virginia has to offer.

Tasks that CNAs might perform for patients include bathing, changing clothes and sheets, shaving, brushing teeth, and various hygiene related routines.  Hospice CNA's may offer education to family or caregivers to the patients we treat. This offered guidance provides families the knowledge they need to safely care for their ill loved ones.  As a general overview of what CNA's might do on a daily basis when caring for patients, take a look at the video below created by the "CNA Practice Tests" YouTube channel.

CNA's carry out this back breaking work with a caring, compassionate attitude which embodies the hospice philosophy by promoting comfort and quality of life in all they do. Medi Hospice would like to take this time to thank all of our CNA's and aides across the country for their generous and kind hearted work.  Without the dedication of CNA's the healthcare world would be severely lacking in many areas. Thanks to your sacrifices we are able to maintain the proper dignity and respect for our patients up until they pass away.

For more information about CNA's please visit the National Network of Career Nursing Assistants at

Wednesday, February 18, 2015

Virginians, Winter Weather Safety, and Hospice


Free Winter Snow HD Pics Download - Winter Snow HD Pics
A Winter Road

A winter storm has hit Virginia, marking the first major snow event Virginia has experienced this year.  Because storms like this are so few and far between, Virginians are not always prepared for snow and ice covering our roadways and walkways.  This type of storm can shut down schools and businesses for days.

Of course, people are still sick and need to be cared for during this time.  Medi Hospice does the best it can to continue to care for the terminally ill receiving hospice our services.  Though our offices might be closed because of winter weather, staff remain on call around the clock to provide top-notch care. 

Nurses and social workers on call during these hours might educate a patient or family member on how to deal with a medical situation over the phone if a nurse can not get there or until a nurse can get there.  A nurse's soothing, knowledgeable voice over the phone can alleviate stress and help a caregiver or patient get through a particularly tough situation.  If an emergency arises, nurses might make an on call visit to patients, even during a snow storm.  It is always Medi's goal to provide the best care so that our patients and families can be comfortable confronting the difficult end of life process.

Safety is always important to our employees, especially during threatening weather conditions.  As this recent string of winter weather passes through, please be prepared to deal with the challenges this weather brings.  Stay off the roads while they are covered in ice and snow, unless there is an emergency or you must go to work or school.  You can find more information on how to cope with winter weather at the website of the Virginia Department of Emergency Management.

Surving Winter Weather VDEM Ready Virginia David Watson
Surviving Winter Weather as found on the Virginia Department of Emergency Management website.

Here are some other sites with information on getting through winter weather:

Virginia Department of Transportation - Winter Travel Information

TWC - Five Winter Driving Tips - How to Shovel Snow

Thursday, March 27, 2014

Hospice Volunteer Screening Process

Can you imagine letting someone you have never met before into your home to sit with your relative while you go out and run errands?

What if the relative your relative was terminally ill, diagnosed with 6 months or less to live, and you were incredibly stressed at the prospect of caring for them until they die?

This situation is essentially what most families on hospice care are asking hospice volunteers to do for them.  Volunteers are asked to visit patients and families about one time per week for one to four hours per visit.  During a time that a hospice volunteer is spending time with a patient, the patient's family member might go out to pick up groceries, get maintenance for their car, or go to a doctor's appointment they had been putting off for some. 

So much is asked of the individuals involved in this situation.  The patient and the family must trust that the hospice volunteer is a trustworthy trained individual who will be responsible and compassionate when caring for the patient.  The volunteer must trust the family will respect and value them as one who truly wants to help.  What a high stakes relationship this can be with both parties being so vulnerable!

Due to how delicate the relationship can be between the volunteer, the patient, and the patient's family, hospice volunteers are required to undergo extensive screening and training before they are allowed permitted to begin their volunteer assignments.  This certainly is not the type of volunteering you can just show up and start in one day! 

Federal laws require all individuals who will be exposed to private patient information to complete background checks before volunteering.  Medi Hospice screens all volunteers by having them complete a state and national background check.  Face to face interviews with all potential volunteers are conducted by the hospice volunteer coordinator.  In addition to that, volunteers must provide the contact information of three references who can be called to verify this hospice volunteer program is a good fit for the applicant.

The screening process is quite extensive.  Volunteers might feel like they are applying to a job with all the listed requirements.  These measures are taken to protect the hospice organizing the volunteer program.  Hospices do not want to send in just anyone to care for these families dealing with such end of life issues.  Safety for patients and families is always at the forefront of these actions. 

Hospices want to ensure the be sure the best possible administered by the best, most compassionate people.  That way all involved can feel comfortable with the volunteer services being provided.  Any fears or worries a family will feel when inviting a stranger into their home to care for a loved one can be eased, at least a little, in knowing that a well screened, qualified, compassionate volunteer is being sent into their home.

Wednesday, February 12, 2014

Saint Valentine's Day

Valentine's Day is a special time of year for many lovers who might exchange cards and heartfelt messages, go on dates, and enjoy quality time together.  Working in hospice as a volunteer coordinator, I have come to value time spent with others.  Confronting mortality with hospice patients and their families has provided me a better understanding that we are all given a limited time on planet earth.  Though it can be sad and difficult for us to understand, death is just as much a part of life as is birth.  At the end of life we say goodbye to those we love and go our separate ways.

Goodbyes such as this are hard.  When one watches their life long spouse pass away as a terminally ill hospice patient, the surviving spouse is left with grief that might be harder to cope with on special days such as Valentine's Day.  Time previously spent conversing over a hot meal might then be spent alone, making life that much more difficult to handle.  A special day of  the year many lovers use to exchange heartfelt moments and enjoy quality time together could no longer retain that meaning to someone grieving. 

Because of moments like this, Medi Hospice in a total family care approach keeps contact with the loved ones of patients for a 13 months after their loved one has passed away.  Bereavement support is an essential piece to hospice care.  Mailings about grief, telephone calls, group support meetings and even visits from hospice staff to family members help them work through the grief process.  All this is done with genuine compassion and concern so that families may better deal with emotions of loss in a healthy, positive way.  That way the first Valentine's Day without your partner will hopefully be a little easier to get through.

Thursday, January 23, 2014

2014 National Patient Safety Goals

Hospice in the United States is strictly regulated by the Joint Commission on Health Care.
Take a look at the 2014 Home Care National Patient Safety Goals as developed by the JCHC.

- Identify patients correctly
     Use at least two ways to identify patients.  For example, us the patient's name and date of birth.  This is done to make sure that each patient gets the correct medicine and treatment

- Use medicines safely
     Record and pass along correct information about a patient's medicines.  Find out what medicines the patient is taking.  Compare those medicines to new medicines givne to the patient.  Make sure the patient know which medicines to take when they are at home.  Tell the patient it is important to have their up-to-date list of medicines every time they see a doctor.

- Prevent infection
     Use the hand cleaning guidelines from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention or the World Health Organization.  Set goals for improving hand cleaning.  Use goals to improve hand cleaning.

- Prevent patients from falling
     Find out which patients are most likely to fall.  For example, is the patient taking medications that might make them weak, dizzy, or sleepy?  Take action to prevent falls for these patients.

- Identify patient safety risks
     Find out if there are any risks for patients who are getting oxygen.  For example, fires in the patient's home.

These are some of the basic standards which home health care organization must meet to qualify as an accredited institution caring for patients as designated by the JCHC.  More information can be found on their website.

The Joint Commission of Home Care

Medi Home Health & Hospice seeks to meet and exceed these standards in our care for patients and their families.  Every Medi staff member, including hospice volunteers, are educated on the basics of hospice.  We strive for excellence and personal attention in our care, to create a safe, comfortable environment for all.  

Each volunteer completes a comprehensive hospice training to become prepared to support and visit terminally ill patients.  Volunteers must be comfortable with the special task of caring for others who are at the end of their life.  If you are interested in learning more about volunteering for hospice, please contact our office at (804) 282 - 4301.