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Health Services and Hospice of Coshocton celebrating anniversary

| July 25, 2016

COSHOCTON – This year, 2016, marks an important milestone in the life of a local, nonprofit organization, Health Services and Hospice of Coshocton, as they celebrate 30 years of serving the Coshocton Community.

What started out as a local “home grown” agency providing Hospice services, has grown in 30 years to also offer home health services, Extra Care, private pay program, Passport provider services, and DD services.

The organization began from ideas pulled together by very forward thinking, community minded, persons who had read and heard about the hospice concept of care that had originated in England.

This hospice idea had come to the United States with hospice programs springing up largely in the East Coast area. Many of the interested Coshocton folks thought that the idea of hospice care should also be offered to the Coshocton community.   These folks pulled together information and a film about hospice care that was shown in church basements to various community persons, hoping to get more and more community people interested in the idea. From those meetings, more and more people did embrace the idea of hospice care for the Coshocton community.

After much work meeting Medicare regulations and establishing initial funding through support from the Coshocton Foundation, the Schooler Foundation and the Dr. Richard Emmons Fund, as well as numerous local service and church groups, the Coshocton community gave birth to a hospice program.

A handful of staff persons including Pam Gwinn, Barb Emmons and a board of directors were ready to go to work offering this new program which provided compassionate, comfort care to those persons dealing with end of life issues.

In 1986, the first hospice patient was enrolled and cared for, followed by many more. Since 1986, around 3,000 Coshocton residents and their families have been served by the hospice program.

As time went on, the organization, called Hospice of Coshocton, looked at other ways to serve the Coshocton community. When Coshocton Hospital wanted to sell its Home Health agency, Hospice of Coshocton purchased the agency and the name of the organization changed to Hospice and Home Health of Coshocton.

On down the road, again to meet community needs, the Extra Care program was added as an option for people to have the ability to private pay for additional services not covered by Medicare, Medicaid, or private insurance. These were services that elderly folks might find helpful to allow them to remain at home a little longer.

Around this time, the organization also started to serve the DD community and the organization’s name was changed to Health Services of Coshocton at that time because it was felt that there were many health services being offered under the one organizational name.

Still later, the organization became a Passport provider, so there were many ways that the organization could assist the Coshocton community and still can to this day.

In an effort to help the community know and remember that Hospice services were still an important part of the organization, the name of the organization was again changed several years ago to Health Services and Hospice of Coshocton and is the name it currently is known by in the community.

The organization will be celebrating in a variety of ways during the rest of the year, but some major events are being held the first week of August with special mid-day open house times complete with health care speakers, and discussions on care choices. Those events are being held Tuesday through Friday, Aug. 2-5 starting at 11 a.m. and ending at 2 p.m. each day. Free blood pressures will be taken at this time and staff will be available for a “meet and greet” time with refreshments. The community is invited in for the open house activities and speakers on each of these three days.

On Friday, Aug. 5, from noon to 8 p.m. the organization will have a large community yard sale with items donated from the Health Services and Hospice Staff members. All proceeds from this will go back into the community to help children with school supply needs. Also a free carnival will be held in the yard of the Health Services Building complete with a snow cone machine, bounce house, face painting, a hot dog stand, popcorn, lemonade and water, all in an effort to say thank you to the community for allowing the organization to serve in the community for 30 years. More information about these celebration events can be obtained by calling 740-622-7311.

The whole Coshocton community is invited to come and celebrate with Health Services and Hospice of Coshocton – a nonprofit Hospice and Home Health agency built by our community to care for our community. Come celebrate at 230 S. Fourth St.

 

 

 

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Article contributed to The Beacon.

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