March 5, 2021
U.P. Home Health & Hospice Postpones Eighth Annual “Dancing with our Stars Marquette County Style” to benefit the U.P. Hospice Foundation to 2022
U.P. Home Health & Hospice is announcing that Dancing with our Stars, Marquette Style will be postponed to May of 2022 due to Covid restrictions and at the request of the cast, in order to put on the best event possible. This event, which is for the benefit of the U.P. Hospice Foundation, began in 2013 and has been the sole fundraiser for the hospice foundation. It is the hope of all involved that by 2022 we will be able to once again fill Forest Roberts Theatre and provide the fun and excitement that this show has consistently brought since its inception.
While it was a difficult decision to postpone DWOS Superheroes & Villains Edition to Wednesday, May 25, and Thursday, May 26, 2022, it was made for the well-being of our dance couples, dance professionals, logistical coordinators, and our community. With this change, the majority of the cast originally committed to 2020 will continue with their journey to perform in DWOS Superheroes and Villains.
All sponsorships will carry-over to the 2022 performance. If you purchased tickets for the performance and would like to ‘beat the rush’ for next year’s ticket sales, you may keep your existing seats and use them for the 2022 performance. If you would like to support the hospice foundation, please visit our web page at https://uphomehealth.org/hospice-foundation/
If you have questions or want to request a refund on your tickets, please call U.P. Home Health & Hospice at (906) 225-4545.
Since 1973 U.P. Home Health & Hospice has been your only LOCAL comprehensive provider of home health, hospice & provide duty services; our agency is considered an Essential Service Provider and we are continuing to provide ALL necessary services to our patients and families. We can help your doctors by being their eyes, ears, and hands in the home and report our clinical findings to them. We are prepared for this type of emergency and work closely with Federal, State, and Local Emergency networks. Our staff is provided with Personal Protection Equipment (PPE) necessary to protect our patients/families/staff and we monitor the well-being/health of our entire staff daily. We realize that patients and families still need these critical services, especially since they are isolated in their place of residence. We take your safety very seriously and adhere to all infection control precautions. Please know that we are here for you in this uncertain time.
Gathering for our Memorial Services is one of our most beloved traditions. We are honored to remember your loved ones with you and thank you for the opportunity to serve them.
For the health and safety of our team, our volunteers, and our community, our Winter Memorial Service went Virtual in 2020 for those in our bereavement program. The program included remarks from Jennie Garrett-Bureau, Executive Director/Administrator, Dr. Michael Grossman, MD, Hospice Medical Director, Pastor Warren Geier, Hospice Chaplain, Gina Iery, Senior Director of Clinical Services. Names were read by our nurses and social workers, and Rusty Bowers provided the beautiful music.
Thank you for allowing us to serve you.
Throughout the month of November, U.P. Home Health & Hospice will be joining organizations across the nation hosting activities in recognition of National Hospice and Palliative Care Month. For more than 40 years, hospice has helped provide comfort and dignity to millions of people, allowing them to spend their final months wherever they call home, surrounded by their loved ones. U.P. Home Health & Hospice has been serving the Marquette community since 1973.
“This year’s theme is ‘Faces of Caring’, the idea behind that is that SO many people are involved in Hospice Care, from the doctors, the nurses, the care aides, bereavement counselors, and more,” stated Jennie Garrett-Bureau, Executive Director/Administrator of U.P. Home Health & Hospice. “But Hospice is about more than just the clinical team- it’s about YOU, the family, the friends, and the community members that are consistently caring for a loved one. As we really began to think about the theme, we realized we had a unique representation with our angels. So, for the month of November and during these difficult times, we want you to look around and see that you, too, Live in a World of Angels.”
The U.P. Hospice Foundation, the agency’s nonprofit foundation, is excited to join in this endeavor. “Educating our community about hospice is an integral part of our mission. We are proud and excited to join the agency and, with the support of truly dedicated volunteers, share these activities with our community,” stated Jack Frost, board member.
The purpose of the following activities are two-fold: 1) To educate our community on hospice during National Hospice & Palliative Care Month, 2) to lift the spirits of our community during these difficult times by encouraging our friends and neighbors to find the angels among us, and within ourselves. Visit www.uphomehealth.org or www.facebook.com/WorldOfAngels1973 for additional details on individual events.
· November 1 – 30: Throughout the month U.P. Home Health & Hospice is encouraging YOU to find the angels among us and post them to www.facebook.com/WorldOfAngels1973 or email it to email@example.com. Help us spread the word by ‘liking and sharing’ the facebook and be eligible to win one of four angel baskets throughout the month of November. Winners will be drawn weekly. Find your own angel or choose from one of ours!
o Visit Harlow Park: “Honoring Hospice: Living in a World of Angels” Outside Display. Volunteers are decorating the park with angels for the month of November. Community members, families, children are encouraged to visit to lift your spirits and honor those touched by hospice.
o Explore Your Community: “Honoring Hospice: Living in a World of Angels” Seek and Find: Visit www.uphomehealth.org or www.facebook.com/WorldOfAngels1973 to find directions to Angels already in our community. If you see an angel we haven’t posted, email it to firstname.lastname@example.org to be added to our list!
o Decorate Your Home: “Honoring Hospice: Living in a World of Angels” Window Decorations: Decorate your lawn, door, windows or whatever you want with angels, angel wings, halos, or whatever means angel to you! Have fun, make it unique, and bring some joy into the world! Turn it into a fun family activity and post it to www.facebook.com/WorldOfAngels1973. Then drive around and see what everybody else has done!
· November 1: Marquette County Bells for Hospice - Virtual Service. U.P. Home Health & Hospice, Lake Superior Life Care & Hospice, and Trillium House proudly present Marquette County Bells for Hospice-Virtual Service to kick-off National Hospice & Palliative Care Month. Bells for Hospice specifically honors and recognizes all who have died under hospice care and acknowledges respect for their families. Visit facebook pages of U.P. Home Health & Hospice, Lake Superior Life Care & Hospice, or Trillium House to watch the service.
· November 6: Social Media Action Day- A coordinated social media effort throughout the nation to flood social media with images showing all the special things for which hospice and palliative care are known. If you have a story, share it with the tags: #HospiceMonth #HospiceAwareness #hapcFacesOfCaring and #hapc
· November 11: Veterans Day
o Patients and families of veterans in U.P. Home Health & Hospice’s Hospice Program will have a private ceremony of lunch and a recognition gift for their years of service to our country.
o U.P. Home Health & Hospice, Lake Superior Life Care & Hospice, and Trillium House are partnering for a D.J. Jacobetti Home For Veterans Wish List Drive. Drop off donations at 1125 W. Ridge Street – Marquette, 510 Mather Avenue- Ishpeming, or 914 W. Baraga Avenue- Marquette.
· November 15-22. During Downtown Marquette’s Ladies Week, U.P. Home Health & Hospice will unveil an “Honoring Hospice: Living in a World of Angels” inside display at the Masonic Square Mall. Stop in and visit the display while shopping in downtown!
· November 18: 6:00pm-8:00pm “Speaking Grief” Virtual Screening
o Public Radio 90, The New York Life Foundation and New York Life Agent Michael Zinis, WPSU and other public broadcasting stations have teamed up to bring you "Speaking Grief," a program initiative aimed at creating a more grief-aware society by validating the experience of grievers and helping to guide those that wish to support them. Cindy Nyquist, RN, Founder and President of U.P. Home Health & Hospice will participate in a panel of grief experts as a part of the WNMU Public Radio Virtual Screening of “Speaking Grief.” Visit www.wnmufm.org for more information.
· Stay tuned for December, when we will unveil a surprise to complete National Hospice and Palliative Care Month!
Hospice is considered to be the gold standard for quality, compassionate care during a life limiting diagnosis. Hospice services are provided by a team of experts in medical care, pain management, emotional and spiritual support, and volunteers who all tailor their skills to the individual’s wishes. Emotional and spiritual support is also extended to the family and friends. Generally, this care is provided in a person’s home or in a home-like setting with Hospice care provided by a local Hospice provider. These providers specialize in palliative care and work closely with staff and volunteers to address all the symptoms of illness, with the aim of promoting comfort and dignity. Hospice is a covered benefit by most insurances. For more information about Hospice, or the “Honoring Hospice: Living in a World of Angels” events, please visit www.uphomehealth.org or contact us at email@example.com or (906) 225-4545 or (906) 485-4545
On July 15, 2020, U.P. Home Health & Hospice hosted their annual summer memorial at the Carp River Gardens in Negaunee, MI. U.P. Home Health & Hospice hosts two memorials annually as a part of its bereavement program, which lasts 13 months and aims to provide the best support and care for the family of hospice patients who have passed.
“This has been a particularly difficult year for everybody. Many people have lost loved ones and were unable to host any sort of service, others are still coping with loss from before the pandemic,” said Executive Director/Administrator, Jennie Garrett-Bureau. “These memorials are about closure and support. As an agency, it was important that we provide the opportunity to do this, while also planning and changing how it is done for the health and safety of those who attend. Luckily, the size and beauty of the gardens meant that we were able to spread out safe distances from each other.”
Changes included social distancing at the gardens where volunteers helped families set-up chairs that were distanced from other households and individuals. Masks were required and provided (if needed), hand sanitizer was readily available, and all refreshments were individually packaged. Attendees were welcome to tour the garden for relaxation and reflection.
During the ceremony Pastor Warren Geier, Hospice Chaplain, provided remarks and prayers for those that have been lost and Dr. Michael Grossman, Hospice Medical Director, spoke as attendees released butterflies in memory of their loved ones. Staff members read the names of each person lost over the year and each attendee was provided ‘Forget-Me-Not’ seeds to plant at home. Senior Director of Clinical Services, Gina Iery, closed the ceremony. “Your loss is our loss, as we also cherish the memory of your loved ones. Thank you for the opportunity to serve your family during these difficult times.”
June 20, 2020
U.P. Home Health & Hospice : Always There When You Need Us
U.P. Home Health & Hospice recently completed a COVID-19 Survey by the Bureau of Community and Health Systems within the Department of Licensing and Regulatory Affairs. The purpose of this unannounced survey was to determine if all health care organizations in the State of Michigan were in compliance with Federal requirements related to implementing proper infection prevention and control practices to prevent the development and transmission of COVID-19.
We are pleased to announce that the survey revealed that our agency was in Substantial Compliance with participation requirements and no deficiencies were cited.
As always, we are monitoring how to provide healthcare in compliance with the CDC, State, and Local Regulations. Our number one priority is, and has always been, keeping our patients, our community, and our angels safe and healthy.
April 8, 2020
U.P. Home Health & Hospice Postpones Eighth Annual “Dancing with our Stars Marquette County Style” to benefit the U.P. Hospice Foundation
U.P. Home Health & Hospice has spent the last seven years hosting our uniquely successful Dancing with our Stars Marquette County Style which benefits the non-profit U.P. Hospice Foundation. This event is one-of-a-kind in Marquette County and the U.P. Hospice Foundation has been fortunate enough that its previous successes will allow us to postpone the 2020 Dancing with Our Stars Marquette County Style without affecting any patients under our care for this year.
While it was a difficult decision to postpone DWOS Superheroes & Villains Edition to Wednesday, May 26, and Thursday, May 27, 2021, it was made for the well-being of our dance couples, dance professionals, and logistical coordinators. Cindy Nyquist, President, David Aro, Executive Director of the Foundation, and Jennie Garrett-Bureau, Executive Director/Administrator of U.P. Home Health & Hospice, along with the TEAM, have investigated several alternative options; however, because we pride ourselves on hosting an excellent event for everybody involved, the uncertainty of the next few weeks would affect the high-quality production our community has come to expect over the years.
All the dance couples, dance professionals, judges, and hosts have graciously committed to the 2021 show and are excited to continue their journey with DWOS Superheroes and Villains. All sponsorships will carry-over to the 2021 performance, giving you extended sponsorship benefits through May 2021. If you purchased tickets for the performance and would like to ‘beat the rush’ for next year’s ticket sales, you may keep your existing seats and use them for the 2021 performance. If you would like a refund for your 2020 tickets, please contact our office by August 31, 2020.
PLEASE NOTE- this event is STILL HAPPENING only with a one-year delay. If you have questions or want to request a refund on your tickets, please call U.P. Home Health & Hospice at (906) 225-4545.
Since 1973 U.P. Home Health & Hospice has been your only LOCAL comprehensive provider; our agency is considered an Essential Service Provider and we are continuing to provide ALL necessary services to our patients and families. We can help your doctors by being their eyes, ears, and hands in the home and reporting our clinical findings to them. We are prepared for this type of emergency and work closely with Federal, State, and Local Emergency networks. Our staff is provided with Personal Protection Equipment (PPE) necessary to protect our patients/families/staff and we monitor the well-being/health of our entire staff daily. We realize that our patients and families still need these critical services, especially when you are isolated in your place of residence. We take your safety very seriously and adhere to all infection control precautions. Please know that we are here for you in this uncertain time.
March 7, 2020
U.P. Home Health & Hospice & Upper Peninsula Health Plan Present the Women's Health Expo
On Saturday, March 7 U.P. Home Health & Hospice and the Upper Peninsula Health Plan hosted its inaugural Women's Health Expo at Westwood High School (300 Westwood Drive, Ishpeming). The day included educational presentations, vendors, health screenings, demonstrations, and a chance to win prizes! This event was free and open to the public. Pre-registration was REQUIRED to guarantee a box lunch, a 'swag bag', and a chance to win an iPad! Approximately 300 attendees participated in the activities throughout the day, which included health related vendors (listed below) and pampering stations of chair massages, jewelry cleaning, and manicures. The schedule was:
Doors open at 9:00 am.
10:00-10:45 - Educational Session # 1
"Diabetes vs. Pre-Diabetes: Is it really the same?" - Dr. Michael Grossman, MD. Family Medicine
"Physical Therapy & Women: An Introduction to the Pelvic Floor" - Laurie Smith, PT, Active Physical Therapy
“Substance Abuse & Why It Should Matter to You” - Erin Wright, MSN, FNP-BC, – Great Lakes Recovery
11:00-11:45 - Educational Session # 2
"Periodontal Health: The Questions & Numbers You Didn't Know (or were afraid) to ask" - Dr. Steven Davis, DDS, MSc, MS, Upper Peninsula Periodontics
"Self-care through Meditation" - Emily Miller, LLMSW, DP - Great Lakes Recovery
"Your Path to Health: Health & Screenings Specific to Women"- Dr. Catherine Kroll, DO - Upper Great Lakes Family Health Center
12:00-1:00 - Lunch & Opportunity to visit vendors, health screenings, and pampering station. Box lunches of a sandwich (ham, turkey, or vegetarian), fruit, chips & a cookie, and a bottle of water.
1:00-1:45 - Educational Session # 3
"The Keys to Living a Healthy & Active Lifestyle" Ryan Lowery, MS, LAT, ATC, CAFS - Active Physical Therapy
“Substance Abuse Treatment for Women” – Naima Jones, LLMSW - Great Lakes Recovery
Healthy Eating- Dr. Hilary Metcalf, MD - Bell Family Medicine
2:00 - Conclusion
VENDORS & Services-
U.P. Home Health & Hospice - Blood Pressure & Blood Sugar Screening
Upper Peninsula Health Plan
Active Physical Therapy - Injury Prevention Screening
Anytime Fitness of Ishpeming
West End Health Foundation
Queen City Running - Shoe Fitting
League of Women Voters
Goodkind of Life
The Women's Center
Wattsson & Wattsson Jewelers - Ring Cleaning
Zonta Club of the Marquette Area
U.P. Healthy System- Bell
Superior Eye Health & Vision Therapy- Eye Pressure Screening
Great Lakes Recovery Center
The Vein Clinic - Vein Screening
Marquette County Health Department
Essential Bodywear - Garment Fitting
Native Nails - Manicures
Kora Mills- Pure Life Massage
Tina Simonetta Samuels - TLC Massage
Stay tuned for the Women's Health Expo 2021- Email KoriT@UPHomeHealth.org for information on how to become a sponsor or vendor.
February 25, 2020
Dancing with our Stars Marquette County Style Kicks Off with Star Reveal!
The stars, the drama, the glamour, and the glitter are back as U.P. Home Health & Hospice proudly presents the Eighth Annual “Dancing with our Stars Marquette County Style” to benefit the U.P. Hospice Foundation. Dance stars will be revealed LIVE on TV6 on Tuesday, February 25, 2020 at 6:00 PM. The fundraiser will benefit the U.P. Hospice Foundation and its programs with 100% of proceeds supporting hospice patients and their families!
“Dancing with our Stars Marquette County Style” will feature TWO NIGHTS of performances again this year! Opening night will be held on Wednesday, May 20, 2020 at Forest Roberts Theatre on the campus of Northern Michigan University. Doors to the theatre will open at 6:30 PM with the show beginning at 7:00 PM. Watch as the judges give their initial thoughts and critiques of the performances and then judge for yourself as you’ll get to cast your vote for your favorite couple after the show! (Applies to opening night only.)
Stay tuned to find out who the winners are on Thursday, May 21, 2020 when the dancers compete once more. Votes from the previous night, as well as online votes and judges’ scores, will be added together to find out our winners!! Doors open for the red-carpet event at the Hedgcock Building at 5:00 PM with the show beginning at 7:00 PM at Forest Roberts Theatre. Hors d’oeuvres and a cash bar will be provided. (The audience will enjoy the exact same show both nights with the exception of the red-carpet event the second night, as well as the awarding of the trophies.)
The U.P. Hospice Foundation supports the “Make-A-Memory” program along with providing supplies, services, equipment, and respite for hospice families that may be unavailable to them otherwise. Some examples of what the U.P. Hospice Foundation has been able to do for hospice patients and their families include facilitating one person’s dream to see the President of the United States in person and another’s commitment to be the Matron of Honor at her great-granddaughters wedding, through the use of an iPad that transported her virtually to the California beach ceremony. The U.P. Hospice Foundation has also been able to provide technology such as hearing aids, tablet computers for better communication with family and friends, and has helped create family reunions, fishing trips, and building a wheelchair ramp, just to name a few.
For the “Dancing with our Stars Marquette County Style” event, Marquette County dance professionals have come together to help our local stars compete for the coveted Mirror Ball Trophy. Local stars will soon be practicing for the big event with online video updates of their progress. There will be a Fan Favorite Award, given the evening of the second night of performances (5/21), to the star couple that collects the most online votes from February 25, 2020 through May 21, 2020 at www.uphomehealth.org/DWOS, as well as votes cast at both shows.
Tickets for both performances will go on sale on Monday, March 9, 2020. Please call 906-225-4545 for ticket pricing and to reserve and pay for your tickets. A maximum of four tickets are allowed per caller. Tickets will be mailed to you.
We are delighted to announce this year’s lineup of stars! Dancing for the 2020 Mirror Ball Trophy are:
• Jessica & Tony Stagliano
• Jamie Thayer & Jason Lee
• Brittany Blackburn & Spencer Larson
• Taylor Kulju & Tristan Louma
• Paige & Justin Gahn
• Mercy & Tony Odueyungbo
• Alyssa & Patrick Digneit
• Sarah Balding & Ryan Engle
Our equally sensational group of talented dance professionals will be overseen by director of dance, Jill Grundstrom, and will coach, instruct, and choreograph a ballroom style dance for our stars are:
• Camilla Mingay
• Katie Bertram
• Alexandrea Riley
• Maureen “Mo” McFadden
• Kristin Frak
• Jenna Neaves
• Kimber Schumann
• Gracie Fries
If you are interested in becoming a sponsor for this event, please contact Kori Tossava at 225-4545 or firstname.lastname@example.org for the sponsorship levels.
Join us for TWO great nights of fun and pure entertainment with all proceeds benefiting Hospice care in Marquette County. It’s about how you LIVE! For more information on the U.P. Hospice Foundation, please contact 906-225-4545.
This week U.P. Home Health & Hospice held our Winter Memorial Services in Marquette & Negaunee. Please take a moment to remember those we lost and to celebrate the life they lived. Thank you for the honor of letting us serve you.
November 12, 2019
U.P. Home Health & Hospice Recieves HHCAHPS Honors
U.P. Home Health & Hospice has been named a 2019 Home Health Honors recipient by HEALTHCAREfirst, a leading provider of billing and coding services, CAHPS surveys and advanced analytics. Home Health Honors is a prestigious program that recognizes home health agencies providing the highest level of quality as measured from the patient’s point of view.
“We are excited to recognize the 2019 Home Health Honors recipients for their hard work and dedication to providing exceptional care,” said Misty Skinner, Executive Vice President of Services at HEALTHCAREfirst. “I congratulate U.P. Home Health & Hospice on its success in achieving this highest of honors.”
Award criteria were based on Home Health CAHPS survey results for an evaluation period of April 2018 through March 2019. Award recipients were identified by evaluating performance on a set of 19 quality indicator measures. Performance scores were aggregated from all completed surveys and were compared on a question-by-question basis to a National Performance Score calculated from all home health agencies contained in the HEALTHCAREfirst’s Home Health CAHPS database. Home Health Honors recipients include those home health agencies scoring above the HEALTHCAREfirst National Performance Score on 17 of the evaluated questions. HEALTHCAREfirst holds a special recognition, Home Health Honors Elite, to honor home health agencies scoring above the HEALTHCAREfirst National Performance Score on all 19 of the evaluated questions. Please visit HEALTHCAREfirst’s website at www.healthcarefirst.com to learn more about HEALTHCAREfirst’s Hospice CAHPS survey program as well as the Hospice Honors awards.
U.P. Home Health & Hospice Executive Director, Jennie Garrett-Bureau, credits the agencies the agencies longstanding leadership and clinical expertise for being named a 2019 Home Health Honors recipient. She said, "We have an amazing team here that always puts the patient first. We look to providing the best continuity of care for our patients. These people are our friends and neighbors and we take care of them like they are.”
November 1, 2019
U.P. Home Health & Hospice and Lake Superior Life Care & Hospice Join Together for Marquette County Bells for Hospice
U.P. Home Health & Hospice and Lake Superior Life Care & Hospice proudly present Marquette County Bells for Hospice (MCBH) in conjunction with the National Bells for Hospice event. MCBH specifically honors and recognizes all who have died under Hospice care and acknowledges respect for their families. The Hospice staff and volunteers from U.P. Home Health & Hospice and Lake Superior Life Care & Hospice will come together for a bell ringing event on Friday, November 1, 2019 at 11:30 at the Marquette Commons, 112 South Third Street, in Downtown Marquette. Local church bells will be rung along with local hand bell choirs at noon. Fellowship and a lunch provided courtesy of Jimmy John’s will follow.
Hospice is considered to be the gold standard for quality, compassionate care during a life limiting diagnosis. Hospice services are provided by a team of experts in medical care, pain management, emotional and spiritual support, and volunteers who all tailor their skills to the individual’s wishes. Emotional and spiritual support is also extended to the family and friends. Generally, this care is provided in a person’s home or in a home-like setting with Hospice care provided by a local Hospice provider. These providers specialize in palliative care and work closely with staff and volunteers to address all the symptoms of illness, with the aim of promoting comfort and dignity. Hospice is a covered benefit by most insurances.
October 21, 2019
Congratulations on Receiving the Evergreen Award, Cindy!
(Read the full speech below)
This year’s Evergreen Award Recipient embodies the leadership, development and selfless skills and traits common in all of our illustrious recipients of this Award. This woman is sensitive, compassionate, and empowered - borne out of life’s experiences and keen observation of what is needed or missing in her ‘ideal world’. She is also intelligent, brave and driven and went on to achieve an advanced degree, which enhanced her abilities and created opportunities for her to pursue her agenda of helping our most vulnerable and compromised people.
She has high ethical and moral standards, which included never losing the importance of family and friends. Her steadfast commitment to their well-being and needs simply made her even more effective in understanding and meeting the needs of so many in our community. Through her career she has been a huge supporter of numerous charitable organizations as an individual and through her work place; some of which include:
- Lake Superior Community Partnership and the Greater Ishpeming/ Negaunee Chamber of Commerce
- First Nighter’s Club
- Toys for Tots
- TV6 Can-a-thon
- Retired and Senior Volunteer Program
- Disabled American Veterans Van Fund
- Superior Alliance for Independent Living (SAIL)
- Alzheimer’s Association
- American Cancer Society’s Relay for Life
- Upper Peninsula Children’s Museum
- Great Lakes Center for Youth Development
- United Way of Marquette County
- Many of the local school districts
She quickly became a trailblazer or pioneer and through this trek into then, here-to-fore, unmarked territory. She mentored many women to excel and achieve leadership positions. She set an example for women and girls and proved that if you want something and work hard enough at it, then you can make it happen and anything is possible. I, for one, always find it difficult to believe in the power of 1 and yet history shows us that all major changes, movements, new innovations, establishments and organizations do start with 1. Our candidate is in that category. Up until now, I have deliberately described her broadly but cannot continue without putting these laudatory remarks into context which will, then, quickly reveal her identity to all of you.
As a girl, she experienced the agonizing death of her mother at age of 31 who left 3 young children. When our recipient was a young woman, tragedy followed again when her stepmother lost a battle to cancer at the age of 38 and now leaving behind a total of 6 children; 4 were still school-age living at home. As was the normal practice in the 50’s and 60’s, her mothers spent their last days dying and alone in the hospital. This had a profound effect on our recipient and she was determined to find a better way to care for terminally ill patients. She saw how the then current practice adversely affected children and their lives afterward for many years. Yes, she became sensitive, compassionate and empowered largely because of these experiences which had affected them all.
Our recipient went on to pursue a nursing degree; Bachelor of Science in Nursing as a non-traditional student in the first class of the NMU BSN program. She was turned away from the hospital St. Luke’s nursing program because she was married and had a small child. In fact, she was told she belonged at home taking care of her husband and child.
In doing research for her BSN she came across the word ‘Hospice’ and a woman named Cicely Saunders who was unknown at the time to her nursing instructors. But, our recipient was intrigued and began corresponding with her. Cicely Saunders was Founder of the Modern-Day Hospice movement in England and the World. Our recipient was convinced this was a better way of caring for others.
Our recipient continued her Nursing education and learned more about 'Hospice Philosophical Care’ which she introduced to the U.P. in 1973 by starting a small volunteer hospice program with the help of her mentors/Instructors and Dean of the Nursing Program. Imagine! This was the first hospice in the state of Michigan and one of the first three in the country! This exemplifies the intelligent, brave and driven attributes that fueled her pioneer spirit. She could now offer and build on a compassionate and caring system to patients and their families diagnosed with a life-limiting disease. She inspired many to join this worthy goal.
After establishing the volunteer hospice in 1973 (currently U.P. Home Health & Hospice), she also established the stand-a-lone Lake Superior Hospice program in 1979. She has maintained her association with U.P. Home Health & Hospice, helping it to grow to become a comprehensive home health, hospice and private duty agency, which focuses on continuity of care of each patient. She has been a vital part of the ongoing growth and improvements to this program over the past 46 years. To accomplish these ends entailed much work. She had to create her own team from the ground up and that included training (educating and supporting and mentoring) her team on how to take care of hospice patients and instill the hospice philosophy in them; a daunting task!
She also helped educate and promote the development of “local” hospice programs to meet the unique needs of each community across the Upper Peninsula of Michigan. As a result, many consider the U.P. of Michigan as the cradle of the hospice movement in the nation. In the late 70’s there were more hospice programs per capita in the U.P. than anywhere else in the country! The field was and still is dominated by women and our recipient continues to mentor nurse managers and administrators in both the philosophy of hospice and home-based care.
She was a charter member of what is now called: Hospice and Palliative Care Association of Michigan. She sought and achieved certification of her programs from the Community Health Accreditation Program (CHAP) and was invited to be a member of their Board of Review. As a result she was instrumental in developing the CHAP Hospice Standards of Practice and became a Senior Auditor/Site Visitor for CHAP to help other programs throughout the nation to provide the highest standards of care.
Throughout her career, she mentored and provided consulting services to anyone who requested it, always without charge because she believed that she needed to help spread the good works of hospice. She is still considered to be a local, regional, and national expert and speaker regarding hospice and palliative care. Even now she is embarking on a ‘tour’ to promote the importance of keeping high quality healthcare local.
She believes in community involvement because a strong community furthers better health and health decisions. She has been involved with Zonta (past president), Rotary (1st woman president in the region), Kiwanis, mentoring high school students by providing after-school employment to help develop skills for future success, and continues to be a speaker at the Mining Journal Senior Health Expo and more. She has encouraged her staff to also become active in the community and many have taken leadership roles from everything from service clubs to state trade organizations. Commitment to caring has never faded; in fact, just recently, she allowed a young woman experiencing recovery from a serious health issue to stay in her home for several months while she was in Florida, so the woman could get on her feet.
As stated earlier, her and her agency’s involvement in the community and region is extensive and some mentioned earlier, and I would like to add a few more:
- In 1980 her agency became the first proprietary Medicare Certified Home Health Agency in Region V ( a 6-state area) of the Health Care Finance Admin
- Developed Home Health and Hospice Pathways that have been incorporated into an international software company’s product
- She continues as a national and local speaker and consultant
Because of all of the involvements, business development, extraordinary education and mentoring activities, she and her business have received many awards, too numerous to mention here.
But, in closing, she has demonstrated excellence, creativity and initiative in building her business from the bottom up and mentoring women and girls all along the way (and still does) to reach their leadership potential.
How fortunate to have this trailblazer, this passionate, caring woman in our community from which it has received immeasurable benefits from her vision. She has inspired and mentored so many. I’m proud to introduce you to the 2019 Evergreen Award Recipient, Cynthia Nyquist!