We believe that quality outcomes for patients and a vigorous education experience for staff and volunteers go hand in hand. From the day we start and throughout our hospice careers, the learning never ends.
This fall we will roll out our new six-week orientation and ongoing education program. Not only will we continue to help new staff master competencies and skills associated with hospice work, but we also provide the opportunity for staff to engage in discussions and exercises aimed at enhancing cultural, spiritual, physical psychosocial skills and attitudes related to dying and death. The new orientation program will also help our staff and volunteers become more aware of their own views and beliefs about death and dying and how this can affect their clinical practice. By exploring these issues within the safety of their orientation class and with our supportive, seasoned staff, orientees will increase their awareness of how their views and attitudes affect their work positively and will, therefore, improve their abilities to focus on meeting the needs of our patients and their families. This classroom/workshop learning will be mingled with hands-on field experience that provides opportunities to observe, interact and ask questions of their clinical preceptors.
Promoting lifelong learning is at the core of our quality and education department. And we invite staff to join in the review of a situation and use critical thinking skills to help all of us “think outside the box” on ways to improve patient-family centered care. We hope that providing easily accessible resources and approachable expert clinicians will encourage all Gilchrist Hospice Care staff to not only seek, but enjoy learning.
We hope to continue “guiding the way” in end of life care and also in end of life education.