OLATHE, KAN. (Aug. 24, 2012) – The hospice program at Olathe Medical Center (OMC) is celebrating 30 years of providing services to residents of a seven-county area. The program began as a volunteer organization in July 1982 for the Olathe Community Hospital. When changes in Medicare benefits occurred, the program went from solely a volunteer program to a department of the hospital. OMC was the first hospital in the Kansas City metropolitan area to provide hospital-based hospice care.
"Olathe Health System has made a sustained commitment to the hospice program for 30 years,” Charlene Shibel, hospice director, said. “This sends a huge message to our community that we are very experienced at providing compassionate, quality care for individuals and their families during a vulnerable, important time of life."
During the past 30 years, strong community support has continued to boost the hospice program through donations and volunteering. Its services have expanded tremendously. With the completion of the capital campaign to build an inpatient hospice house, the next step in the program is becoming a reality.
The Olathe Medical Center Charitable Foundation announced in April that it surpassed its fundraising goal to build the Hospice House at Olathe Medical Park. The facility will fulfill a critical piece for the end-of-life experience, allowing staff to provide quality inpatient care and a home-like environment at a meaningful time for patients and their loved ones.
The Hospice House at Olathe Medical Park will be a dedicated and uniquely equipped facility to provide modern medicine and compassionate care to terminally ill patients who are unable to stay at home, enabling them and their families to live fully and comfortably while coping with end-of-life issues. The facility will include:
• A private and serene environment, inside and out, located at Olathe Medical Park, on the campus of Olathe Medical Center.
• Eight individual patient/family suites with the ability to expand.
• Communal sitting areas, kitchen facilities, flower gardens and other amenities to ensure a comfortable setting.
• Around-the-clock nursing care.
• Respite care.