by Andrea Powell, HPCCR Marketing Manager
It’s time to pull out the paper party hats, turn off all the lights, and fire up some candles! We’ve got a lot to celebrate this week at HPCCR! If it were up to me, I would have baked a cake (it’s kind of my thing), but the people in my office would have (lovingly) kicked me out the door and locked it firmly behind them. (Summer is right around the corner, after all!)
Anyway, on to our celebrations. On Sunday, Hospice & Palliative Care Charlotte Region turned 37 years old. That might not be old for us humans, but trust me, for a hospice organization, 37 years puts you in the class of “seasoned”, to say the least.
Also, on this very day five years ago (my, how time has flown!) I published the very first post on our blog, Hospice Matters. Five years. I actually can’t believe it.
First let’s talk about HPCCR. We became an organization on March 8, 1978. But we didn’t take our first patient until November of 1979. And then we took eight more that year, bringing our total to a whopping count of nine. Ok, let’s compare. In 2014, we admitted over 3,000 hospice patients and somewhere between 1,000 to 2,000 palliative patients. That’s some serious growth, folks. In fact, since that first patient was admitted back in 1979, our total hospice admissions to date (through December 2014) is over 40,000 patients. Not to mention the fact that we have grown from serving just Mecklenburg County in NC to now serving 11 counties in North and South Carolina. That’s just outstanding. It means that we have touched the lives of over 40,000 families in our large region, showing compassion and exquisite care to each and every one. Every person in this organization factors into this equation. Because, ultimately, we are all in it for the same reason. To make end of life honorable, peaceful, and beautiful.
On to the blog. I am very proud to say that during the five years that this blog has been published, not one week has gone without a post. Not one. This post, in fact, will be our 356th. Our readership continues to increase as our social media presence grows and, as this blog habitually goes out on Facebook and Twitter, the reach of our blog is several thousand people each week. Upshot? Several thousand people know just a little bit more about end-of-life care than they did the week before. Hospice Matters is a virtual stage with which we educate our community and where we demonstrate the impact of hospice care on real people who have benefited from our services. These stories honestly write themselves; they are always emotional, sometimes uplifting, occasionally heartbreaking, but always worth reading. They reflect the very heart of what we do and I am overwhelmingly honored to (so often) be their conduit to the “outside” world.
So in honor of these important “birthdays”, I am going to close my eyes and make a wish. A wish that hospice care becomes the preferred choice at life’s end, that the fear surrounding death be relinquished, and that our enthusiasm for life continues until the very last beat of our hearts.
Of course, you can’t make a wish without cake. . . .blog, education, end of life, hospice comment below, or link to this permanent URL from your own site.