On Monday, April 9th at the Meredith Community Center, residents from the Greater Lakes Region had the pleasure of hearing Carolyn Crosby, MD and hospice medical director of Central New Hampshire VNA & Hospice speak about Palliative Care and Hospice. This presentation preceded National Healthcare Decision Day on April 16th with the intent of helping people be better prepared to complete their Advanced Care Directives, or at least to start the conversation with their families. The idea was to inform people about the difference between Palliative Care and Hospice Care as well as some important decisions families and patients need to make when receiving these different types of care. In order to be an advocate for yourself or a family member and get the care you want, you have to understand what options are available. Dr. Crosby eloquently explained the options for end of life care and the care of someone with a chronic illness through stories of the patients she has cared for over the years. Although the topic of the evening was not one that most people feel at ease discussing the attendees expressed gratitude that such important information was shared. If you have not planned for your Healthcare future start the process now. Give your family the gift of knowing how you wish to be cared for at a time when you may no longer be able to tell them.
Each person finds their own path through the heartbreak of grief. This spring, neighbors of all ages across the Lakes Region are invited to explore how art, music, and nature can be a part of a path of healing through loss and finding wells of creativity and solace as they remember loved ones.
“Sometimes art, music, and nature can help us honor our connection to a loved one in ways that take us out of the torment of our heads . . . letting our bodies and hearts remember and heal,” shares Dan Kusch who provides bereavement and spiritual care at Central New Hampshire VNA & Hospice. “Often friends or members of the same family grieve differently and it can be lonely. Another gift of these workshops is safe space to have a shared experience and also offer each person their own ways to express their loss and love.”
Upcoming workshops are Saturdays 10am-Noon on April 14, May 12, and June 16 in Laconia. Upcoming activities shared by local artists include harp and keyboard, pottery, wire jewelry, poetry and writing, hand-made books, fly-tying (for fly-fishing), wind chimes, paper boat luminaries, and more. The last two workshops are close to Mother’s and Father’s Days and may be especially good openings to honor mother, father, and parent figures in our lives. These workshops are free and open to the public. All ages are welcome. Children under 18 must be accompanied by an adult.
For more information and to register for any of these grief support offerings, please call Dan at 524-8444 or firstname.lastname@example.org
Central New Hampshire VNA & Hospice is offering Free Blood Pressure Clinics in many communities in Central New Hampshire and around the lake over the coming months. These clinics are an important outreach initiative for our agency to make connections with people in all of the communities we serve. Please take the opportunity to come and meet your community visiting nurse and take care of your health!
Currently you can attend a Free Blood Pressure Clinic at the following locations:
- Center Ossipee at the Concerned Citizens at 3 Dore on the first and third Thursdays of the month
- Wolfeboro Senior Center (located in the All Saints Church on Main Street in Wolfeboro) on Monday, January 15th from 10-12PM
- Moultonborough Public Library, 4 Holland Street, Moultonborough, NH on January 12th from 10:30-12:00 PM
- Gilmanton Town Hall, 503 Province Road, Gilmanton, NH on Wednesday, January 17th from 9-10:30 AM
If you or your organization is interested in scheduling a Blood Pressure Clinic please call Angela Smith at 524-8444.
There are so many acronyms in our daily conversations that sometimes we can misunderstand what they mean. As a society we also make a lot of generalities. An acronym that is so often misunderstood and generalized are the letters VNA. Sometimes they are misconstrued for a group that is related to the VA which refers to Veteran’s Affairs and the services that Veterans are able to access as a benefit from their years of service. Often there is also a generalization in the community that all VNA’s or visiting nurse associations are part of the same larger group. This is not the case. Our agency, the Central New Hampshire VNA & Hospice is a non-profit, 501c3 agency that has been servicing members of the community since 1918 which means it is our 100th year Birthday! Our nurses and therapists live in your community. They could be your neighbors and they may even be your friends. Our visiting nurses are a rare breed of caring individuals with a unique set of skills that provide nursing care, rehabilitation, pediatric care, and hospice care in homes across Central New Hampshire so that you or your family members can be at home after a health crisis or hospitalization and everyone can rest easier knowing they are supported. We look forward to being that VNA for you!
This summer’s Alton Centennial Rotary Paint a Butterfly Contest/ Fundraiser is in full swing! All proceeds from this Contest/Fundraiser will benefit Central New Hampshire VNA & Hospice. Purchase your butterfly by Monday, August 7th at the Profile Bank on Main Street in Alton, NH (a personal entry is $25 and an entry with a sponsor is $75). Butterflies should be treated with a coat or two of latex paint or Gesso for the best results. Once treated paint or adorn your butterfly in your own unique way (gluing, and/or attaching items such as plastic flowers, beads, sparkles, metals, glass ceramics, cloth and more is acceptable and you may do so beyond the outside dimensions of the butterfly). All entries must be returned to the Alton Profile Bank by Monday, August 14th. The culmination of this contest/fundraiser will be on August 19th at the Butterflies in the Park Bash from 12 -3 pm at B&M Railroad Park in Alton. All of the butterflies will be judged and awards will be given. Cake & Ice cream will be served as well. You can pick up your butterfly after the event at 3:30 pm, or let them know when you arrive for the event that they can auction it off to benefit the Central New Hampshire VNA & Hospice.
Central New Hampshire VNA & Hospice is proud to announce Hospice Director and Chief Clinical Nurse, Jennifer Legassie (formerly Laramie) has been appointed to sit on the Board of Director’s for the New Hampshire Hospice and Palliative Care Organization. The NHHPCO is a charitable, non-profit organization with a mission to help the people in New Hampshire have access to excellent care that is valuable and meaningful to them when facing life-threatening conditions. This is accomplished through: education of healthcare professionals and caregivers; raising public awareness and expectations for quality hospice and palliative care; providing meaningful networking opportunities for the members; as well as, engaging other organizations around the state to participate in their vision and mission.
Legassie has been with Central New Hampshire VNA & Hospice for 12 years and sits on the New Hampshire Board of Nursing. Legassie has made Hospice and Palliative Care her passion and when asked about this new role, Legassie stated she is “looking forward to expanding her role on a state level in order to further the mission of quality end-of-life care for all who so greatly need Hospice”. Legassie’s new position on the board will be further testament to the commitment she has for a hospice patients’ quality of life, dignity and respect.
Central New Hampshire VNA & Hospice is a proud member of the We Honor Veterans (WHV) Program. In collaboration with the Department of Veterans Affairs and the National Hospice and Palliative Care Organization, our hospice team is working hard to improve care available to dying Veterans and their family caregivers.
Central New Hampshire VNA & Hospice has achieved its level four recognition as a WHV partner. This is the highest recognition possible. Countless hours of education to the community, as well as staff, on the various needs and concerns of veterans at the end of their lives has been done and is an ongoing mission.
Attendance by our Veteran Volunteers and staff at veteran events throughout the communities we serve is pivotal in continuing this mission of recognizing those veterans in need of specialized care and their caregivers in need of special support.
Our veteran hospice patients receive a personalized certificate and pin along with a unique red, white and blue handcrafted blanket to recognize their service to our country. Each presentation is done by a veteran volunteer within the same military branch the patient belongs to. Another important goal of the We Honor Veterans Program is to assist veterans in understanding and gaining access to valuable resources through the VA system.
Over the past year, we have been able to erect a flag pole at the Laconia branch location to truly celebrate and recognize our country and those who have and are serving in our armed forces.
Starting in November each year, a celebration in Wolfeboro and Laconia occurs that is titled the Tree of Heroes. The WHV team decorates trees in red, white and blue and leave ornaments for loved ones to write the names of their military heroes on to be hung on the tree. It has become a much loved event at both locations.
At Central New Hampshire VNA & Hospice, quality end of life care for our veterans is not only a mission but a passion and we will continue to strive to serve this patient population with honor, respect, dignity and quality. They deserve nothing less.
Jennifer Legassie, RN, Hospice Director, Chief Clinical Nurse
Central New Hampshire VNA & Hospice