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  • Hosparus Health’s Palliative Support Gets 87-year-old Back in her Garden

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Without Hosparus Health, Norma Niehaus says she might not still be here.

At 87 years old, she has multiple health challenges, including osteoarthritis, hypothyroidism and chronic kidney disease. In October 2016, she was in such discomfort that she feared she could no longer manage her illnesses at home.

“When I first called, it was out of desperation,” says Norma. “I couldn’t stand up straight, I couldn’t take a shower, I couldn’t sleep in my bed. I was a mess.”

Soon after calling Hosparus Health for help with symptom and medication management, her condition improved dramatically. “I’ve been doing so well ever since,” she says. “I did not want to go to a nursing home, and they understand that. I want to stay in my home, period. This makes that possible for me.”

Norma’s nurse, Holly, “runs interference” for her, she says, by coordinating with her regular doctor. Holly also was instrumental in getting Norma connected to a physical therapist, which has helped her mobility.

“I have such peace of mind knowing I can call her at any time,” says Norma.

Norma also meets with social worker, who has provided information on available resources, and helped her complete documents for her advance directives. That advice and guidance has been especially valuable to her, Norma says, because her adult children do not live nearby.

Now that’s she’s feeling so much better, she says, “I want to make every day as much fun as I can.” And she is doing just that. She is particularly happy to report that Hosparus Health’s palliative care program has gotten her healthy enough to work in her garden again, which is one of her passions.

“It’s a terrific program. I highly recommend it.”

Hosparus Health needs your help more than ever to ensure other patients like Norma have access to the extra layer of support offered by our palliative program. Show your support by clicking here to make a gift. Any amount makes a difference!

 

*This story was originally published in November 2018. As of October 2020, Norma is doing very well. She’s still working in her garden and making the most of every day.

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