Hospices Unite For Better Care Options

Dear Friends,

Hospice of Lansing, Sparrow Hospice Services and Visiting Nurse Services of Michigan Hospice are mid-Michigan’s original hospices – all nonprofit and dedicated to providing comfort and symptom management to the thousands of dying patients and families who have chosen our hospice programs.  Nonprofit means we were formed not for private gain, but for helping the people of the communities we serve.  We are charitable organizations that take care of every patient – no matter how rich, poor or sick.

For more than 25 years, we have served the people of Lansing and surrounding communities throughout 12 counties.  All three of our programs care for patients in their own homes, in nursing homes, in assisted living facilities, in adult foster care facilities and in hospitals.  Hospice of Lansing and Sparrow Hospice Services also offer residential hospice facilities.  Visiting Nurse Services of Michigan Hospice uses both facilities as needed.

The hospice movement has a long history of charity.  In 1633, St. Vincent de Paul, the patron saint of charity, founded the Sisters of Charity to serve the sick and the poor in their own homes, hospitals and other institutions.  In 1879, the Irish Sisters of Charity opened the first hospice for the dying.  In 1905, they opened another hospice in London, England, and it proved to be the training ground for the modern hospice movement.  Its medical director, Dr. Cicely Saunders, created the principles of modern hospice care and found ways to control pain that revolutionized the care of dying patients.  She inspired a Connecticut team to launch America’s first hospice in 1974.  Some 4,000 American hospices now provide care for over 1 million patients each year.

{quotes}Hospice care offers more than taking care of dying patients.{/quotes}  After patients have passed, family members need help to work through their grief.  All three of our programs offer comprehensive bereavement services that include support groups, memorial services, family counseling and education.

We are pleased to announce that our three organizations will offer a combined bereavement calendar for the first time in 2007.  This common calendar will allow us to serve more people than ever before, sharing our talents, energy, experience and wisdom.

As separate organizations, we also will work together to produce a combined 2007 education calendar, listing events for the general public as well as educational opportunities for health professionals and volunteers.

Hospice of Lansing, Sparrow Hospice Services and Visiting Nurse Services are joining hands this December as nonprofit hospices committed to serving the public good.  Our patients’ lives are our life’s work, and we will continue to help them and their families make every day count.

As we enter another holiday season, we want to salute our patients and families for lives well lived and for trusting us with their care.  We also want to thank our many friends, whose generosity and support sustains us as we reach out to so many of limited financial means throughout Mid-Michigan.  In the unforgettable words of Charles Dickens’ Tiny Tim, “God bless us, every one.”


LarsEgede-Nissen, MPA FAAMA, Executive Director, Hospice of Lansing

Michelle Wiseman, RN MPA,Administrative Director, Sparrow Hospice Services,

Christie Herrick MSW, , Hospice Manager,Visiting Nurse Services