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Community Care Hospice Logo

Community Care Hospice

1669 Rombach Ave.
Wilmington, OH 45177
Phone: 937.382.5400
Fax: 937.383.3898

Ohio's Community Mercy Hospice Logo

Ohio's Community Mercy Hospice

1830 N. Limestone St.
Springfield, OH 45503
937.390.9665

Ohio's Hospice at United Church Homes Logo

Ohio's Hospice at United Church Homes

Chapel Hill
12200 Strausser St. NW
Canal Fulton, OH 44614
330.264.4899

Ohio's Hospice at United Church Homes Logo

Ohio's Hospice at United Church Homes

200 Timberline Dr. #1212
Marietta, OH 45750
740.629.9990

Ohio's Hospice LifeCare Logo

Ohio's Hospice LifeCare

1900 Akron Rd.
Wooster, OH 44691
330.264.4899

Ohio's Hospice Loving Care Logo

Ohio's Hospice Loving Care

779 London Ave.
Marysville, OH 43040
937.644.1928

Ohio's Hospice of Butler & Warren Counties

Ohio's Hospice of Butler & Warren Counties

5940 Long Meadow Dr.
Middletown, OH 45005
513.422.0300

Ohio's Hospice of Dayton Logo

Ohio's Hospice of Dayton

324 Wilmington Ave.
Dayton, OH 45420
937.256.4490
1.800.653.4490

Ohio's Hospice of Central Ohio

Newark

2269 Cherry Valley Rd.
Newark, OH 43055
740.788.1400

Inpatient Care Center

1320 West Main St.
Newark, OH 43055
740.344.0379

Ohio's Hospice of Central Ohio at
The Ohio State University
Wexner Medical Center

410 W 10th Ave - 7th Floor
Columbus, OH 43210
614.685.0001

Ohio's Hospice of Fayette County Logo

Ohio's Hospice of Fayette County

222 N. Oakland Ave.
Washington Court House, OH 43160
740.335.0149

Ohio's Hospice of Miami County Logo

Ohio's Hospice of Miami County

3230 N. Co. Rd. 25A
Troy, OH 45373
937.335.5191

Ohio's Hospice of Fayette County Logo

Ohio's Hospice of Morrow County

228 South St.
Mount Gilead, OH 43338
419.946.9822

Ohio's Hospice

Ohio's Hospice

Dayton

7575 Paragon Rd.
Dayton, OH 45459
1.800.654.4490

Cincinnati

11013 Montgomery Rd.
Cincinnati, OH 45249
1.800.654.4490

Going Above and Beyond

Nursing Staff Certification

Every hospice employs registered nurses (RNs), licensed practical nurses (LPNs) and state tested nursing assistants (STNAs) to provide the hands-on nursing and personal care for which hospice is so well loved and so highly regarded.

But Ohio’s Hospice goes well beyond the basic minimums set by the state of Ohio and Medicare by requiring all of its nursing staff to also be certified by the leading national organization for end-of-life care nursing, the Hospice and Palliative Nurses Association (HPNA). It’s a standard that few, if any, other hospice providers can match.

It’s a commitment driven by a mission to provide superior care and superior services, a fierce determination to set an unparalleled standard for quality care, and a desire to provide employees with both a fulfilling job and opportunities for career development and advancement.

“We do this because we believe certification simply reflects our mission to provide superior care,” says Brandi Barlow, Ohio’s Hospice vice president of Administration, Human Resources, Education and Volunteer Services. “Our staff are able to show they have this level of knowledge and expertise in caring for hospice patients. It brings us to a higher level compared to other providers.”

How It Works

Within two years of joining Ohio’s Hospice, every nurse and nursing assistant must achieve HPNA certification, which requires passing a comprehensive exam. Certification is a requirement for continued employment.

Ohio’s Hospice makes a considerable investment each year in supporting its nurses in their pursuit of certification. It provides test preparation courses, a practice test, and coaching and counseling after the practice test. Participants are paid for their time in class, and Ohio’s Hospice pays for the cost of the certification test. Anyone who fails to pass the test on a first try receives additional support before taking a re-test.

Upon obtaining certification, nurses and nursing assistants receive an hourly rate increase that amounts to more than $1,000 a year and are launched on their way to building a career path at Ohio’s Hospice.

Julie Wickline, senior director of Education and Staff Development at Ohio’s Hospice, observes that, “Success breeds success. Yes, everyone appreciates the pay bump. But it really is rewarding to see how our team members want their certification because their colleagues have it. They recognize the value.”

Additional Development Opportunities for Hospice Professionals

Ohio’s Hospice long has offered tuition reimbursement to support all staff in developing a fulfilling career ladder. New in 2020 is a scholarship program to recruit and train STNAs. Nursing assistants have the most frequent contact with hospice patients; they provide the personal care that allows hospice patients to live in comfort and dignity. It is not just one of the hardest jobs in hospice — from a human resources perspective. It’s also one of the most difficult recruitment and retention challenges for any hospice provider.

Looking for innovative solutions, Ohio’s Hospice resolved to invest in expanding the pool of available nursing assistants.

“We began partnering with area colleges to offer a tuition-free, four-week educational program for prospective nursing assistants. Participants are hired prior to starting the program and are paid their regular salary during the 75 hours of coursework. In addition to their classroom work, students work alongside a preceptor caring for patients for two months before they begin seeing patients on their own,” Barlow says. “In addition to the candidate’s salary and benefits and tuition of approximately $650, Ohio’s Hospice also pays the $100 cost of the state’s STNA exam.”

The program is attracting both recent high school graduates as well as people returning to the workforce or looking for a career change, Barlow explains.

“This came about because we asked our recruitment team to think outside the box to ensure we have the staff we need to provide superior care,” she says. “They asked, what makes Ohio’s Hospice attractive to entry-level candidates? What can we do to get people to join our team? We have excellent educational opportunities and an extensive orientation program. So why not pay candidates to go to class and support them as they begin their journey with Ohio’s Hospice?”

Investing in the Community by Investing in Staff

While some of these education and career development activities necessarily were put on hold as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic, including the two-year requirement to obtain HPNA certification, Ohio’s Hospice continues to look for ways to invest in its own staff as a way of investing in the communities it is privileged to serve.

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