What Does Hospice Mean to You?

“Senior Discounts Las Vegas” recently invited hospice experts in Las Vegas to share their thoughts during National Home Care and Hospice Month. Steve Lodesky, a chaplain at Las Vegas Solari Hospice Care, wrote about how he helps Solari patients and families cope with end-of-life issues. His piece so eloquently expresses our Solari philosophy of care that I asked him if I could share his words on my blog. I hope Steve’s message will inspire you as much as it did me!

Hope, Dignity and Love

By Steve Lodesky

Chaplain, Las Vegas Solari Hospice Care

Being born into life is already a huge miracle — we’ve won the lottery, you might say. And then we grow into unique human persons; each of us is one-of-a-kind. Most of us learn to treasure life and love and our loved ones. But if we live long enough we also know we need to come to grips with the flip side of the coin — with the inevitable losses, the decline of our health, and the decline of pretty much everything else that’s precious to us. It’s been said that, “No one gets out of here alive!” For me, the beauty and dignity and wonder of our lives only come to full expression when combined with hope. We hope there is more than this. We hope we’ll see our departed loved ones again. We hope the sound and fury of our lives signify something, and not nothing.

No matter how we understand “God” or “life after death,” such beliefs are critical to real hope. As a hospice chaplain, I don’t spend time trying to define such mysteries. But I always encourage people to have hope. “Yes, your life matters!” I’m part of a team of professionals that responds to the needs of the patient and family with the best care we can provide. At times, however, the only thing we can do is to be with a patient and family — to be present, to keep vigil. There have been times when I was the only person present for a patient’s transition. And there have been times when I was the only one keeping vigil for hope, dignity and love. But that’s okay. It’s my job. It’s also a privilege and an honor: “Yes, you do matter. And it’s gonna be okay!”


About Solari Hospice Care

Gary W. Polsky is president & chief executive officer of Solari Hospice Care. Mr. Polsky's diverse healthcare leadership experience includes executive positions with Critical Care America, Summit Health and Humana, Inc. Founded in 2002, Solari Hospice Care is devoted to helping people live with dignity and comfort by providing trusted and professional hospice care in the Houston and Las Vegas communities. Focused on enhancing the quality of life for patients and their loved ones, Solari’s exemplary team of physicians, pharmacists, registered nurses, certified nursing aides, administrative staff and bereavement counselors are specially trained to offer the most compassionate and comforting care designed for each patient’s unique needs. To learn more about Solari Hospice Care, please visit www.solarihospice.com, e-mail info@solarihospice.net or follow @SolariHospice on Twitter.
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One Response to What Does Hospice Mean to You?

  1. Dr. Mauri Collins says:

    “Father Steve” was my mother’s chaplain during the last year of her life and brought her much joy and spiritual comfort. He treated my mother with dignity and respect and listened patiently to her repeat her stories. She recognized him up until almost the end – and his prayers just prior to her transition were a source of blessings and inspiration to us. Thanks to the whole Solari team we were able to keep Mum at home, confident in the knowledge that “back-up” was only a phone call away – and they never failed us. Her nurse and personal care assistant even came to Mum’s Memorial service. Thank you Solari!

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