Hospice Care of Middletown ranks first in state, third in nation

Family members served by hospices took Medicare survey.

Credit: Nick Graham

Credit: Nick Graham

Hospice Care of Middletown, which one official called “a little gem right here in the city,” has received state and national recognition for its commitment to quality care.

Periodically throughout the year, Medicare sends out surveys to family members whose late relatives were hospice clients, said Beth Dorn, community liaison for Hospice Care of Middletown.

Based off the results of those surveys, where family members are asked to rate the care their relatives received, Hospice Care of Middletown finished No. 1 out of the 113 Ohio hospices and No. 3 out of the 3,035 hospices in the U.S.

The 40-question survey, which is sent out two months after a relatives dies, is broken into eight categories, including did the family receive timely help, did the hospice team communicate clearly, did the family receive emotional and spiritual support and would the family recommend this hospice.

Hospice Care of Middletown ranked No. 1 in seven of the eight categories and fifth in the other measure in Ohio, Dorn said.

Each survey participant was asked to rank the hospice from 1 to 10. Based off the total points, Hospice Care of Middletown tied for third in the nation, though Dorn said some hospices didn’t receive enough responses to be eligible.

Dorn said the survey results confirm what she already knew about the agency that serves Butler, Warren and parts of Montgomery, Preble and Hamilton counties.

“It proves that we are doing a great job,” she said. “Our staff is committed to doing a great job. We are humbled and proud of it.”

Hospice Care of Middletown, founded in 1980 as Middletown’s first hospice, started with six employees assisted by six volunteers. Since then, the agency has grown to nearly 30 employees and more than 50 volunteers.

One Middletown family certainly can attest to the work of hospice.

Hospice staff cared for Jack Proffitt for seven months while he battled cancer. One of his two children, Priscilla Lane, 72, said hospice allowed her father to die at home instead of a nursing home.

“That meant the world to him,” Lane said of her 95-year-old father who died on July 1, 2021.

Then when Lane’s mother Alma Proffitt was diagnosed with cancer, Lane never hesitated to call hospice. Proffitt, 95, has been under hospice care for 15 months.

Proffitt said hospice does “everything” for her, from providing medical care to hygiene assistance to emotional and spiritual support.

“They feed her spirit,” her daughter said.

Lori Clements, a Hospice social worker, has been there every step of the way. She frequently has conversations with Proffitt and sometimes that includes discussions about death.

“It’s an honor to travel the journey with them as the travel to the end of life on this planet,” Clements said. “An honor to take the avenue to the powerful transition.”


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