Hospice CNAs (who are known in the hospice world as HHAs or Home Health Aides) are incredibly special individuals and members of the hospice team who provide gentle, compassionate, end-of-life cares for hospice patients. June 18-24, 2020 is the week we celebrate Certified Nursing Assistants (CNAs). This week, in the field of Hospice, we honor and celebrate our amazing Hospice CNAs (HHAs)!
During this week, hospice teams recognize and honor the special work and dedication of the Hospice HHAs.
Home Health Aides enter hospice patients’ homes, without hesitation, at the most intimate and fragile moments to care for dying patients. HHAs provide the basic needs of patients including, but not limited to, bathing, repositioning, oral cares, shampooing, shaving, nail care, companionship, and gentle massages through the application of lotion. Their hands don’t just touch the body of each patient, their hands can touch souls. HHAs develop trust and respect from each patient in an amazingly short amount of time. As a Hospice RN, it is beautiful to see the special connections HHAs make with the hospice patients they care for.
Not anyone can work comfortably and confidently as a Hospice HHA. It takes very special characteristics to be successful as a Hospice HHA. The best Hospice HHAs I’ve ever worked with all had similar qualities and characteristics including:
- Knowledgable about the hospice benefit
- Excellent communication skills: knowing when to talk, and when it is important to just listen to the patient
- Comfortable with the power of silence
- Observant: can see changes
- Attentive to details
- Confident in the Cares they provide
- Not shy about communicating with the Hospice Nurse
- Gentle, caring touch
In addition to the above, some of the best HHAs bring a special and personal “gift” to the hospice patient and to the Hospice Team. For example, some HHAs can bring smiles and sweet laughter, while others can bring a quiet nature that can calm an overly anxious room. Some have an amazing way to develop trust and connections with families, and some have an amazing power to get patients to agree to allow the HHA to provide much-overdue cares. The best HHAs provide a calm, non-threatening, relaxing presence for the patient and the dying patient’s family, and they do it all with compassion and professionalism. They provide a light, gentle hand as the patient is nearing the end of their journey.
HHAs are hard-working, special individuals who truly make a difference.
THANK YOU to all of the amazing Hospice HHAs that go above and beyond providing end of life cares for hospice patients. Your hard work does not go unnoticed – by both the family members and your fellow hospice team members. Your gentle touch calms the patient and the families and provides light during a time of darkness. And, your dedication is celebrated.
To the Hospice HHAs we work with: YOU are a gift, and we are blessed to work both with you and beside you on the hospice team providing end of life cares.
To give light to those who sit in darkness and in the shadow of death.Luke 1:79
For more information about Hospice to share with those that might not be familiar with the hospice benefit, please visit: www.hospice-101.com . This is a simple, easy-to-read website for families and loved ones considering (or new to) hospice services. http://www.Hospice-101.com has no affiliation with any organization and no affiliation with any hospice agency. Just basic, simple information for patients, their loved ones, and caregivers about Hospice.
About the Author: The Hospice-101.com creator and author is a dedicated Hospice Nurse with 8-years of experience in the field of Hospice & Palliative Care. She is also a Certified Hospice & Palliative Nurse (CHPN) who is passionate about education and providing compassionate end-of-life cares.
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