September 25th, 2008

Great River Hospice House will mark its first anniversary with a garden reception from 4:30 to 6:30 p.m. Friday, Oct. 3. The address is 1306 S. Washington Rd., West Burlington. The public is invited for refreshments and entertainment.

In the past year, 150 patients, ranging from 20 to 102 years old, and their families received comfort, care and compassion at Great River Hospice House. Patients who are admitted to Great River Hospice have terminal illnesses and six months or less to live as determined by their physicians. Diagnoses include cancer, AIDS, end-stage heart, lung or renal disease, Alzheimer’s disease and other life-limiting diseases. A team of caregivers helps patients in their homes, nursing homes, the hospital or Great River Hospice House.

The hospice house provides three levels of care:
• Inpatient acute care—For pain and symptom management that can’t be provided in another setting. This care is covered by Medicare, Medicaid and most private insurance plans.
• Respite care—Patients may stay for up to five days at a time so at-home caregivers can have a break. This care also is covered by Medicare, Medicaid and most private insurance plans.
• Residential care—For patients who want to spend the remainder of their lives in the hospice house. This care is not covered by Medicare, Medicaid and most private insurance plans, but financial assistance will be available for those who qualify.

The exterior and interior of the 8,500 square-foot hospice house feature a lodge and mission-style theme with soft, natural colors. A walkway and several gardens surround the house. Each of the six patient and family suites features:
• A fireplace
• Homelike furniture, including a sofa-sleeper, comfortable chairs, lamps
• Natural woodwork
• A private patio
• A skylight

Whirlpool baths, massages and hair care services are available for patients in the spa room. Patient meals are prepared in the house at flexible times. Special amenities include freshly baked cookies daily and weekly musical programs.

Common areas for families include:
• Great room with a large stone fireplace
• Indoor and outdoor children’s play areas
• Kitchen
• Serenity room

“The needs of each hospice patient and family are different,” said Chris Olsen, director, Great River Home Health Care and Hospice. “Our goal is to help them have quality time together. The Great River Hospice staff is proud to have helped meet these different needs, and we are committed to being prepared to serve in the coming year.”

For more information about Great River Hospice, please call (319) 768-3350 or toll-free (877) 404-4766.