The Regional Hospice in Danbury, CT just erected a huge billboard which my family members find very ironic. First--the cost of it and second the slogan. We could not get our telephone messages returned, get someone to answer the telephone without a looping phone system that ended in no department or have communication we requested with the clergy or the social workers. Telephone calls were not returned. It was a farce. Our grief is compounded by our experiences with Regional Hospice and how we were treated. Our emotional and spiritual needs were ignored and the CEO's claims of Hospice being "one of the least financially burdening medical services" is not true of a facility that charges $550 per day for our custodial care and nothing more.
Money comes first at this hospice and it is very sad that families are placed under financial strain and do not have their simple requests for the "quality of life" of their loved one met. Hospice is not about appearance and glitz and new furnishings and superficial materialism. It is, by nature, support, good communication (we would get two different scenarios presented depending on which nurse we spoke to), emotional and spiritual guidance, respect, comfort, and being treated well during the most strenuous, tragic time in a person's life. Instead we had in- home nurses who were disrespectful, lackadaisical, and bullying to us as caregivers. Our lives became far worse after dealing with this Hospice instead of better. Our stress as care giving relatives only increased. We felt further burdened not relieved. The opposite of a good Hospice program.
Finances are first and our needs and suffering were just not considered--at least ours were not and neither were those of relatives who came from all over to visit once our relative was an in-patient.***** We were quoted one fee per day of in-patient custodial care and the price went up as soon as our family member was admitted.***** It was quite clear that our money was what mattered ---not what we wanted for our patient or what we so desperately needed to help us in our own suffering. Phone calls were not returned by social workers one of whom specialized in just staring at us.
A Hospice service, whether in-home or in-patient should make everyone feel comfortable. We dreaded each visit from them and having them show up unannounced and behaving like they were superior ---typical "power plays'. This is not Hospice. My good friend was the Director of Clergy for a Hospice in the West. He was appalled by our experiences with Regional Hospice. We were not made to feel "at home" at the center in Danbury, CT but, then again, we were surrounded by security cameras everywhere we went. We were questioned about whether the food on the menu one fills out was for the patient or ourselves. Just rude, controlling, insulting and unnecessary.
When I asked to speak to the Chaplain, an always highly unpleasant administrator loudly and laconically told me I was not allowed to contact him. This is Hospice "care"?They are about image, have hundreds of volunteers doing the work paid employees could do and are very good at public relations and making a name for themselves. This billboard my husband passes each day on the way to work makes him ill. Rather than a good experience...Regional Hospice was a nightmare we would rather forget.