May 2015 | Wesley Hospice

Hospice and Pets

Fourteen years ago was my very first time in a Hospice care facility. With no real knowledge of what hospice care really meant, I had no idea what to expect once I finally got up the nerve to go inside. Once inside, the very first thing I noticed was a very large Golden Retriever walking freely through the halls. Soon after entering my mom’s room, I noticed the dog walking in the room across the hall so I asked my mom’s nurse “Whose dog is wandering around and who does it belong to?” She responded, “Oh what color was it?” I remember thinking is there more than one? She must have sensed what I was thinking and quickly that there are different therapy dogs floating around here at any given time.

Just then, the Retriever made his way across the hall into my mother’s room. About that time, the dog jumped onto my mom’s bed. I didn’t want to overreact, but was concerned about the dog being so close to my mom. The nurse saw the concern on my face and quickly introduced me to Eddie, explaining that he was therapy dog and that he visits the residents and assured me it was a good thing.

That evening, I did a little research of my own and found that there are indeed health benefits to having a dog around. Pets are non-judgmental, and they provide a touch, and a look while having a calming presence about them that can help calm a patient in his or her last days. The next day I noticed when Eddie visited throughout the day that my mom appeared to be at peace. It was almost like she and Eddie had a connection. And though my mom was heavily sedated to be made comfortable, she seem to react each time the dog entered her room and it was very cool and calming to see.

In the end Eddie was right there in the room, as if he knew that the lady he’d met not so long ago was now ready to leave us, and he wanted to be there to offer her any comfort he could in her final hours. After Eddie made sure that my mother made her transition, he made his way over to me to offer me comfort.

Hospice services at Methodist Eldercare will be hosting Hospice 101 on Tuesday, May 19th, 2015 at 7pm at Wesley Glen Retirement Community, 5155 N High St., Columbus, Ohio 43214. Please RSVP to this event by calling Kenya at 614-451-6700 or register online at If for some reason you are unable to attend, please feel free to contact Kenya George at the number listed above for more information.

Columbus Talent Donates Time for Annual Charity Golf Classic

Columbus, OH (May 4, 2015) – The stars will be out Monday, July 13 for the 6th Annual Wesley Glen/Wesley Ridge Charity Golf Classic hosted by Methodist ElderCare Services.

PGA Senior Tour player, Rod Spittle, will be located at Hole 15 where players will be able to purchase a golf ball and have Mr. Spittle hit for their shot. Columbus’ own Channel 6 news personality, Bill Kelly, will be Master of Ceremonies and will be broadcasting live from the event at 5 and 6 pm.  Professional auctioneer, Mike Albert, will once again be the auctioneer for the silent and live auctions.

Title Sponsors for the event are Corna Kokosing Construction Company and FirstMerit Bank. Proceeds benefit Hospice Services at Methodist ElderCare and Wesley At Home.

The event begins with player registration at 8 a.m. and a shotgun start at 9:30 a.m. The event is not limited to golfers. Following the outing, guests and players will have a chance to mix and mingle as the event concludes with awards, dinner and live and silent auctions.

•  $1,000 per foursome (includes 18 holes of golf, beverages, lunch, dinner and auction)
•  $75 per person to attend only the dinner and auction
•  The Charity Golf Classic is limited to 30 teams
•  Deadline to register is Friday, July 3, 2015

For more information on securing a sponsorship or forming a team, contact Mary LeMaster (614) 396-4831 or visit

About Methodist ElderCare Services

Methodist ElderCare Services is an affiliate of the West Ohio Conference of The United Methodist Church providing quality housing, health care and services for seniors in the Central Ohio area. Incorporated in 1967, Methodist ElderCare Services is a not-for-profit corporation that that knows its business and understands its customers. For additional information call (614) 396-4990 or visit

Choosing a Quality Hospice for You or Your Loved Ones

Depending on where you live there could be one or several hospice organizations serving your community. If there are multiple hospices in your area, you can decide which hospice you want to care for you or your loved one and let your physician know which one you prefer.

The National Hospice and Palliative Care Organization has developed some questions to help you identify factors that may be important to you and your family when selecting a hospice.

Questions & Notes

Is the Hospice Medicare Certified?

Most hospices are certified by Medicare and are therefore required to follow Medicare rules and regulations. This is
important if wish to receive hospice care as part of your Medicare/Medicaid coverage.

Has the hospice been surveyed by a state or federal oversight agency in the last five years?

Ask when the last survey was and if any deficiencies were noted and if so, have they been resolved.

Is the organization a NHPCO member and does it comply with all aspects of NHPCO’s Standards for Hospice Programs?

Ask if the hospice is a current NHPCO member, if it complies with NHPCO’s Standards and has completed the Standards Self Assessment, and if so, how recently they completed it.

Is the hospice accredited by a national organization?

Several organizations accredit hospices, surveying them to ensure they meet quality standards. Hospices are not required to be accredited but accreditation can be a reflection of its commitment to quality.

Does the hospice conduct a family evaluation survey?

Many hospices ask family members to complete a brief evaluation of their services after the death of a loved one. Ask
for their most recent scores so you can see how previous patients and family members have rated their services.
Does the hospice own or operate a care facility to provide home-like care in a hospice residence, hospital or nursing home?

This may be important to you if the care needed is complex and/or family caregivers cannot care for the person at home. Are clinical staff (physicians, nurses, social workers) certified or credentialed in hospice and palliative care?

There are several credentials that hospice professionals can achieve based on their knowledge of hospice/palliative care and their educational experience.

What services do volunteers offer, and if requested, how quickly will a volunteer be available?

Volunteers can provide a variety of services including friendly visits, light household chores, running errands, personal care, etc. If you want a hospice volunteer, be sure to ask how quickly one can be assigned and how they match volunteers to meet your needs.

Will staff come to the home if there is a crisis at any time of the day or night and on weekends? Who is available to make the home visit (nurses, doctors, social workers, chaplains)?

Hospice staff are available by phone to help you 24 hours a day, seven days a week. However, some hospices offer limited inhome support on nights and weekends, while others are able to send staff out to a patient’s home no matter when a crisis arises. Frequently a nurse is the best person to make a visit if it is a medical crisis, however, sometimes the crisis is best handled by a physician, social worker, chaplain or another member of the team. Ask if all members of the team are available in a crisis situation during nights and weekends.

If I need to go to a hospital or nursing home which ones does/doesn’t the hospice work with?

If you have a preferred hospital or know that you may need to go to a nursing home, it’s important to find out which ones the hospice has contracts with so they can continue to provide your hospice services in this different setting.

What “extra” services does the hospice offer?

All hospices provide expert medical care, emotional and spiritual care, medicines, medical supplies and equipment, volunteers and grief support after the death of a loved one. In addition to these services some hospices offer specialized programs for children, people with specific diseases, “pre-hospice” care for
individuals not yet medically-ready for hospice care and other “extra” services that may benefit your family.

How long has the hospice been operating in the community?

Again, length of time in the community may be important to you and your family.

How many patients at any one time are assigned to each hospice staff member who will be caring for the patient?

Some hospices assign a certain number of patients to each staff member and may be willing to share that information with you. That might influence your decision to receive care from a hospice.

What screening and type of training do hospice volunteers receive before they are placed with patients and families?

All volunteers must receive training or orientation on hospice care. Some hospices provide specialized training related to bereavement, pediatric care, nursing home care, etc.

How quickly can the intake/admissions staff come to begin the admissions process? Is someone available at nights or on weekends?

Some hospices are able to begin the admissions process and have someone begin hospice services at night or on weekends. If you are referred to hospice late in the day or on the weekend, a hospice’s ability to start services quickly might be very important.

What is the organization’s governance structure?

Whether or not the organization is a non-profit, for-profit, government, faith-based or part of a larger healthcare organization may be important to you and your family.

Is the hospice a We Honor Veterans Partner?

We Honor Veterans Partners have demonstrated their commitment to improving the care they provide to Veterans
and their family members.