Northwest Community Healthcare Expands Hospital-Based Specialized Hospice Care Suite “Midwest CareCenter Hospice Suite”

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NORTHWEST COMMUNITY HOSPITAL ARLINGTON HEIGHTS, Ill. (August 31, 2012) – Northwest Community Healthcare has partnered with Midwest Palliative & Hospice CareCenter to open a hospice care suite at Northwest Community Hospital (NCH) in Arlington Heights. The Midwest CareCenter Hospice Suite at NCH will open Sept. 5, providing specialized, comprehensive and supportive hospice care to seriously-ill patients and their families when it matters most, all while remaining close to home.

“We are pleased to partner with Midwest CareCenter on this important program. The Hospice Suite meets a real need in our community,” said Karen Colby, MS, RN, NCH’s vice president of Patient Care Services. “The development of this program is the result of NCH’s commitment to integrate the full continuum of care services within a single and accessible system of care.”

From the décor and the furnishings to visitor amenities, the seven-bed Hospice Suite has been designed with both the patient and family in mind, creating a “home away from home” setting. Each patient room includes a daybed for a guest to stay overnight, and the Suite features a kitchenette and family lounge so loved ones can remain nearby to relax and refresh. Visitors are welcome 24 hours a day and arrangements can be made for pets to visit, too.

While hospice care is traditionally provided where the patient lives, some patients are faced with more serious, acute symptoms that require a higher and more concentrated level of hospice care, which is now available in the inpatient setting at NCH. The Hospice Suite is staffed by Midwest CareCenter’s interdisciplinary team of hospice specialists, comprised of specially trained physicians, nurses, certified nurse’s aides, social workers, chaplains and bereavement counselors.

A full complement of psychological and spiritual support services will be available to patients and their families. These include grief support, music therapy and faith-based care services. Midwest CareCenter has the only two music-thanantologists in the Chicago area. A specially-designed meditation room in the Hospice Suite is available for those who seek space to reflect, or to find calm and solace.

“We appreciate the opportunity to partner with the team at Northwest Community Hospital to ensure these services are available to their patients and the entire community they serve,” said Jamie O’Malley, MS, RN, Midwest CareCenter president and CEO.

This is the second venture for Northwest Community Healthcare and Midwest CareCenter. In 2010, the two organizations forged a partnership to provide palliative care services to patients with a range of life-altering illnesses and conditions, including cancer, heart disease and lung disease. This year, NCH’s Palliative Care Program became the first in Illinois and among the first ten acute care hospitals in the nation to earn Advanced Certification for Palliative Care from The Joint Commission, the nation’s oldest and largest standards-setting and accrediting body in healthcare.

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