Vitus Healthcare Case Solution
“A hospice pioneer since the late 1970s: Vitas is the nation’s leading hospice provider because of its long-standing experience, unique offerings and its ongoing investment in education, technology and training so that thousands of advanced ill patients could receive a high-quality and compassionate life care every year.” (Vitas Healthcare, 2021)
Vitas Healthcare was initiated in 1978 in Miami, Florida. It was one of the nation’s first hospices, founded by two dissatisfied teachers, “Hugh A. West brook, an ordained United Methodist minister, and Esther T. Colliflower, a registered nurse.” (Vitas Healthcare, 2021) The two teachers met in the early 70’s teaching at a community college in South Florida where they started by teaching a course on human sexuality together and later decided to develop a course on death called, “Life Affirmation and Death Attitudes”. (Vitas Healthcare, 2021) As per an interview with Hugh in 2016; he stated: “you know, we’re not satisfied just teaching about this. We’re not researchers. We’re caregivers.” (Vitas Healthcare, 2021). This was the start of the two going to different conferencing throughout the 70s on death and dying, learning about what hospice was, and deciding to create one of their own. This led the two to an agreement with their first patient, Emmy, an older lady that was terminally ill and only lived a month after they met, but she stated that if they took care of her so she did not have to go to the hospital then she would teach them what they needed to know about caring for patients. (Vitas Healthcare, 2021) With that, they started taking care of patients one at a time, then added a volunteer nurse and social worker so that Esther could step away from the field and define what every patient needed, an interdisciplinary team to ensure they have all the resources they needed. Over the 40 years, Vitas has been providing end-of-life care in the state of Florida, it has grown, providing care in 46 out of the 67 counties, staffing over 5,000 employees, and holding a census of over 10,000 patients daily. It was the only hospice in Miami during the early 80s to early 2000s which provided care for HIV/AIDS patients. It created specialized teams whose sole purpose was to care for what at the time was an unknown disease with unknown treatments. However, today Vitas is not only in Florida, but= has expanded to 13 other states and the District of Columbia, employing over 12,000 personnel and holding a daily census of about 18,000 patients daily. In its 40-years history; Vitas has been a leader in Hospice care, “embracing technology, expanding supportive services to meet ever-changing patients’ needs, creating disease-specific care protocols for heart disease, chronic lung disease, Alzheimer’s/dementia, HIV/AIDs, and other progressive illness”. (Vitas Healthcare, 2021)
Vitas Hospice is structured a lot similar to other Healthcare entities, except it can provide care in homes with skilled nursing facilities. Each patient is assigned an interdisciplinary care team and receives a personalized care plan based on their terms and conditions. Within the interdisciplinary care team, just like other medical providers, there are physicians who monitor the progress of illnesses; nurses to manage pain and symptoms and providing teaching/ aid regarding the provision of personal care and support with activities of daily living, social workers to provide emotional and psychosocial support to the patient and families, volunteers who are trained in end-of-life issues to provide compassion and companionship and chaplains to address the spiritual issues and needs. But unlike other healthcare businesses; Vitas also provides Bereavement Specialist, a special support group that addresses the anticipatory grief and loss after death with hospice families. (Vitas Healthcare, 2021) Vitas also provides 24-hour telephone support, this way if a patient or family needs an assistance at 2:00 A.M. in the morning; someone would always be there to help with either talking them through a situation or getting a Vitas’ staff member to the location to assist the caller in person.
Mission, Vision, Values
As per Vitas Healthcare’s website; its mission is to provide “the highest quality human services, products and case management to terminally ill and other appropriate patients and their families, with measurable advantages for the patients, their families, the medical community, the employees and the stockholders.” (Vitas Healthcare, 2021) To me these fit what Vitas is, it is a Hospice organization that wants to make dying easier for the suffering patients and their families. It does in through various services which it provides, including: provision of end-of-life medical care to the patients/clients, providing social workers and case management to the client and their families, it also assistsin connecting the client and family with specialty services, such as: Paw Pal pet visits. Vitas Healthcare is a very profitable business as well, as according to Nall 2021) Vitas is considered to hold the largest market share in hospice with 4.5 percent while only being in 14 states and the district of Columbia. While receiving training at Vitas; I came to know that the Vitas employees who belong to upper hierarchy also take care of their new employees. Vitas also helps its employees by promoting in-house more than external hiring and through offering decent PTO and benefits packages. However, I’m conflicted because the organization does not offer competitive pay, which makes it harder for the company to retain its good employees who prefer to look after their families without having to stress about their lower income and the financial stress which they are burdened with. The employees also get complaints of not being able to take care of patients in an efficient way, despite of them delivering the healthcare services with an excellence, which further demotivates them.
Vitas’ vision states that patients should be apprised of their clinical prognosis and should be involved in decision-making process that determines how their end-of-life care should be provided.
This makes perfect sense not only for Vitas but also the medical field. People have the right to not only know what is wrong with them but also to have a say in how they should be treated after being educated on the matter. I feel Vitas does this very well, as I have personally communicated with many patients and their families who always said that they always wanted to have the facilities which the organization is providing them with. I believe Vitas does an excellent job, which is why the patients’families share their good experiences with Vitas to other possible clients who might need end-of-life care………………….
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