OMC Hospice helps patients make the most of every moment
By Kim Wood
WEST PLAINS, Mo – Alvin Johnson was visiting his doctor’s office
for the last time. He was weak and nauseous from his treatments and the
travel to town for his medical appointments was just getting to be too
much. It was then that his physician, Dr. Morgan, asked Mr. Johnson if
he and Mrs. Johnson would like to consider Hospice care.
“We don’t know what we would’ve have done without OMC
Hospice,” says Geraldine Johnson. “We’re not used to
receiving help, but giving. We had no idea these services were available.”
Having the facts about hospice can help you and your loved ones make the
right decisions regarding end of life care and take advantage of the full
range of benefits hospice provides.
OMC Hospice provides for the physical, emotional and spiritual needs of
patients and their families in the final stages of an incurable illness.
With hospice care, a team of qualified professionals work to provide medical
care, pain management, and emotional and spiritual support that meets
a patient’s needs and wishes. This qualified team may include a
physician, nurse, medical social worker, aide, chaplain and volunteers.
Trained personnel play an integral role in the care that is given to both
patients and the patients' families as they face end-of-life issues.
The hospice team will support the patient and/or family with arranging
any additional services needed to meet their needs.
For Alvin Johnson, that meant a hospital bed in the living room where he
could remain in the center of the household activity. A household that
that Johnsons had lived in and farmed since 1956, and where their children
and grandchildren often visited. In fact the Johnsons can tell you at
length about each and every one - obviously proud of them and involved
in their lives. They in turn, think he could hang the moon. Alvin has
always taken the time to show a grandchild one of nature’s wonders,
or how a piece of machinery worked.
Alvin’s illness had made that more and more difficult. The time he
had to go to doctor appointments, the fatigue, nausea and pain were all
impacting his ability to enjoy his family. He did not want to spend the
remainder of his illness that way. Deciding to stay home and switch to
hospice care gave him back the best quality of life – his pain and
nausea were able to be managed, returning his appetite which in turn made
him feel stronger and able to enjoy his family again.
The Johnsons of Garfield could be your parents, neighbors, or friends,
embodying the hard working, country goodness of the Ozarks. Proud people
close to their family and wanting to retain their way of life as best
they can. OMC Hospice enabled them in that journey.
“It is an honor to be a part of OMC and provide care for friends,
family, and people in the community that I have lived in for 50 years,”
says Holly Isom, RN, Director of OMC Home Care. She is the daughter of
Billy Joe and Ann Madden of Thayer, MO. “The Johnsons watched me
grow up and told many fun stories to the staff during his care about me
and my family.”
“The OMC Hospice team is the best. They touch many lives during a
very sensitive time providing support and resources to family, friends,
and patient,” continues Isom. “I am ‘Proud to be OMC’
and work along with an amazing hospice team to meet every person, every
time they need exceptional compassionate care.”
On January 16, Mr. Johnson passed from this life at the age of 90. He will
be remembered by his family, friends and caregivers as a loving and patient
man that was most content when at home on his farm -
where he’d baled a family together with the soft strong bonds of
sharing (Paul Harvey, 1978).
OMC Hospice is about living, making the most of every moment. It is about
providing a patient with dignity and quality of life. It is a model of
compassionate care for people facing a life-limiting illness or injury.
“We can’t change that the journey will end, but we can change
how the journey will feel moving forward,” says Roxann Wurst, Community
Representative, Riverways Home Care of OMC.
If you would like to learn more about OMC Hospice, please call 417-256-3133
or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Ozarks Medical Center is a system of care encompassing eight primary care
and 16 specialty clinics, along with complete rehabilitation, behavioral
healthcare and home care services. While the 114-bed acute care hospital
cares for more than 5,400 admissions, the entire medical system has more
than 364,000 patient visits annually in South Central Missouri and Northern
Arkansas. For more information about OMC, visit
From left to right, standing: Cindy, Home Health Aide; Holly Isom, R.N.,
Director, Riverways Home Care of OMC; Geraldine (Jerry) Johnson; sitting: