Wellness Connection: Aviant Hospice

By Tracey Biggerstaff
Wednesday September 12, 2018
Categories: General,Independent Living,Assisted Living,Memory Care


As one of the Fellowship Square Communities, our Historic Mesa community is focused on applying our Mission, Values & Vision to support the residents of our independent and assisted living communities by enhancing and expanding our wellness services. Wellness Connection is an array of services that we are pleased to offer to that end.

Most of the these services can help our residents remain independent or recover from illness or injury. Sometimes however, residents struggle with serious illness and may be nearing end of life. These individuals need ongoing and compassionate relief from symptoms and related stress.

That’s where hospice services can be invaluable to the residents of our continuing care community in Mesa. Shanna Taylor of Aviant Hospice explains what Hospice is (and isn’t):

Who can benefit from hospice services?  What kinds of things are they struggling with?

“An individual admitted into hospice care has a life expectancy of six months or less. Their primary care physician usually recommends hospice care when they believe this to be the situation for their patient. These individuals are often tired of repeated hospital stays and procedures. They no longer wish to seek medical intervention or aggressive care.”

Can you detail the specific ways Aviant Hospice provides assistance?

“Our hospice care is provided at the patient’s home (wherever home may be). Included are a weekly visit from an RN who is also their case manager and primary contact. They will also receive a visit twice a week from a CNA (certified nursing assistant) who provides personal care like shower, dressing and grooming assistance. A social worker is available as needed for resource assistance such as financial or housing issues. We also provide Chaplain services (non-denominational) which includes grief support for family. Lastly, we have wonderful volunteers who can visit to provide the simple comfort of companionship. They often do things like read to patients or take them outside in a wheelchair for fresh air and a stroll.

Additionally, we provide all medications applicable to the hospice diagnosis (our Medical Director oversees and prescribes). We can also secure other items that are needed such as a hospital bed, oxygen, wheelchair, supplies, etc. at no cost to the patient."

What makes Aviant Hospice different from other hospice companies?

“At Aviant, we focus on our Gold Standard of C.A.R.E. - Compassion, Advocacy, Respect, and Education. Also, we are a smaller hospice company and are able to offer specific programs that other hospices don’t have.”

“One such program is our partnership with the We Honor Veterans group. An example was when one of our patients had somehow lost all of his service medals. They held a special ceremony for him and invited his family. The National Guard came and presented him with replacement medals. This group can also match volunteer veterans with patients who are veterans and they may even come to their visit in uniform.”

“We also have something called our daybreak program which is designed for our patients who are struggling with Alzheimer’s or other form of dementia. “Daybreak” was derived from the breakthrough moment of clarity for the patient, often occurring at the dawn of day. The tools in the kit help to encourage lucidity and are designed to bring them comfort. The kits often include weighted blankets, teddy bears, aromatherapy products or music therapy supplies. The kits are individualized based on a patient’s likes or preferences.”

What are common misconceptions about hospice care and what is the truth?

“The biggest misconception is that hospice is a place where you go and die.  The truth is that hospice is a service that is provided wherever home may be.”

“People are afraid that once they come on hospice, they will die sooner.  This is very often untrue. In fact, once in a while patients will improve while under the care of hospice to the point that they no longer need or qualify for hospice care.”

“Patients don’t think they can keep their primary care physician. Often, the primary care physician is willing to follow them and continue to direct care for things unrelated to their hospice diagnosis.”

“Patients think that they must have a DNR (Do Not Resuscitate) signed document. While this is the case more often than not, a signed DNR form is not required in order to be under the care of hospice.”

“Patients believe that only their doctor can refer them to hospice care. Actually, patients or family can self refer and contact a hospice company themselves.”

“Many people think that hospice care is not affordable. The truth is that if a patient has Medicare, hospice services will be fully covered and they will not receive a bill.”

What should an individual do if they want to learn more?

“Contact Aviant Hospice at (480) 398-2411 or visit www.avianthospice.com. We can send a nurse out to evaluate the patient, obtain their doctor’s information and determine whether or not they would be eligible for hospice care. There is no cost or obligation for the consultation and evaluation.”

Aviant Hospice currently serves all of Maricopa County in Arizona as well as Denver, Las Vegas, Cottonwood and Globe.

Choosing an independent living or assisted living community for yourself or loved one can be a hard decision. We want to ensure that our residents know that they are in good hands when they select Fellowship Square Historic Mesa as their home. Our Wellness Connection is one big reason why people choose us when looking for a future home. If you have questions about our senior living services in Mesa, Arizona, please call us 480-436-5122 or send us an email.