HOSPICE CARE OF THE LOWCOUNTRY INC
7 PLANTATION PARK DR UNIT 4
PO Box 3827
BLUFFTON SC 29910
Contact Information
Organization DBA (Doing Business As)
Organization DBA
Address 7 PLANTATION PARK DR UNIT 4
PO Box 3827
BLUFFTON, SC 29910
Telephone (843) 706-2296
Fax (843) 706-4095
E-mail info@hospicecarelc.org
Projected Annual Revenue $2,284,590.00 (2015)
Web and Social Media
Video https://youtu.be/lao1Nd86R6Y
Mission Statement To give comfort and honor dignity for patients and their families through compassionate physical, emotional and spiritual care regardless of their financial circumstances.
Leadership
CEO/Executive Director Jenny Brasington
Board Chair Arno Dimmling
Board Chair Company Affiliation Retired Executive
History and Background
Year of Incorporation 1982
Former Names
NameYear
Hospice Volunteers of the Lowcountry1982
Financial Summary
Revenue vs Expenses Bar Graph - All Years
Graph: Expense Breakdown Graph - All Years
Revenue vs Expenses Area Graph - All Years

Comparing revenue to expenses shows how the organizations finances fluctuate over time.

Source: IRS Form 990

 Breakdown
Net Gain/Loss:    in 
Note: When component data are not available, the graph displays the total Revenue and/or Expense values.
Statements
Mission To give comfort and honor dignity for patients and their families through compassionate physical, emotional and spiritual care regardless of their financial circumstances.
Background

Hospice Care of the Lowcountry was founded in 1982, by a group of committed, caring, local volunteers with a mission to give comfort and honor dignity for end of life patients and their families through compassionate physical, emotional and spiritual care, regardless of their financial circumstances. Now, in our 32nd year, HCL has grown to be the largest, nonprofit hospice and palliative home health care agency in the three county area, serving 350 patients annually. Hospice provides high-quality, compassionate care that helps patients and families live as fully as possible. The focus in on caring, not curing while addressing symptom control, pain management, and emotional and spiritual support expressly tailored to the patient's needs and wishes. Our services are provided by our interdisciplinary team which includes registered nurses nationally certified in hospice and palliative care, certified nursing assistants, more than 200 trained volunteers, social workers, physical, occupational, speech and music therapists, chaplains and bereavement counselors.

Just as our founder, Annalou Thomas was forward thinking and innovative in starting our organization over 32 years ago, we continue with Annalou's progressive spirit. Hospice Care of the Lowcountry strives to remain at the forefront of providing hospice, palliative care and grief support to our community by working to meet the emerging needs among our neighbors and having the education and training to best meet those needs.
            Hospice Care of the Lowcountry has developed creative programs to address the unique needs of our patients and their families. These programs go above and beyond the basic Medicare requirements and thus most are not offered by other organizations in our community, but we feel they are a critical part of providing comprehensive care and support for those facing end of life issues. Included are Video Memoirs, Music Therapy, Hos-Pet Pet Therapy, Hop Aboard, Pet Peace of Mind, Kids Path, The Watchman TM Program, We Honor Veterans and Aromatherapy programs.
In addition, Hospice Care of the Lowcountry never turns anyone way because of financial concerns. Local hospice agencies are known to say no not just to patients who are uninsured but to patients that they perceive as "expensive." Hospice Care of the Lowcountry is firm in our belief that everyone should have access to the end of life care they need regardless of their financial circumstances.



Impact Hospice Care of the Lowcountry strives to remain at the forefront of providing hospice, palliative care and grief support to our community by working to meet the emerging needs among our neighbors and having the education and training to best meet those needs.

            In the past 10 years, for profit hospice organizations have flocked to Beaufort County. Of the 19 licensed hospices, we are 1 of only 2 that are non-profit and independent (i.e. not a foundation of a for profit company). While in some regards, more agencies have allowed the community the benefit of increased education about hospice in general, the down side is that it has become confusing for patients and families to tell the difference between the companies. Unfortunately, many people assume all hospices are the same, but this could not be further from the truth; the quality of care in terms of number of visits, whether expensive patients are turned away, medications and supplies covered, programs offered and staff's education and experience varies greatly. Our goal is to keep educating the community about all of the ways in which we provide exceptional care and support to all patients in need of end of life care.  

 In 2014, we celebrated our 10th Annual Yacht Hop with a record breaking funds raised, grew our We Honor Veterans and Kids Path programs as well as launched The Watchman TM Program.

In 2015, we are excited to introduce aromatherapy to our patients. Anxiety, stress and pain are common issues for end of life patients, but inhaling certain essential oils can help lift the mood, calm the senses, increase alertness or decrease anxiety.

Hospice Care of the Lowcountry is 1 of only 2 hospices in the state to offer a unique program called Palliative Home Health Care. This program is similar to hospice, except that an individual may continue to receive curative treatment. Our goal for 2015 is to increase community education, awareness and access to palliative care services.

Needs

Electronic Medical Records  - $150,000 to purchase the software, installation and staff training, so that we can take advantage of new technologies to improve patient care.

 

Cancer Care - Because of the way cancer affects the body at the end of life, patients with cancer often require costly medications and supplies. In our community, patients with cancer are being turned away, dropped from service as their disease progresses and denied coverage of medications and supplies they need. 53.2% of our patients are admitted with a primary diagnosis of cancer, which is significantly higher than the national hospice average of 36.5%. $54,000 would support direct patient care including medications, supplies and nursing visits, as well as additional education for our staff.

 

Hospice Ambassadors - volunteers to educate the community about hospice: the many benefits of this free service, that not all hospices are the same: the quality of care and range of services can vary greatly, the importance of advance directive and telling your loved ones and medical professionals how you want to be cared for.  

CEO/Executive Director Statement When you have a friend or loved one with a terminal illness, it can be stressful and frightening to foresee what is ahead. What should you do? Where do you turn? When you feel like you are surrounded by bad news, the good news is that Hospice Care of the Lowcountry is here to provide you with exceptional care and support.

 

"No one has ever wiped tears off my cheek before. My heart is full because of your kindness."

 

"What you are doing matters so much to your patients and families and friends. To have you walk with people through the experience is such a blessing to those of us on the receiving end. You are angels on earth!"

 

"I didn't have the time or energy to walk our dog while my husband was ill. The volunteer came daily to walk her and always took a few minutes to ask me how I was doing. My husband passed away 6 months ago and that volunteer still comes by a couple times a week to check on me and my dog!" 

 

Our highly trained professional team of caring individuals can guide you on this journey. Your team is made up of a registered nurse, social worker, certified nursing assistant, spiritual counselor and your physician of choice. Also available is bereavement counseling, speech/physical/occupational/music therapies and volunteers to assist with your individualized plan of care. Additional services and programs, which are unique to Hospice Care of the Lowcountry include Hos-Pet Pet Therapy, Pet Peace of Mind, We Honor Veterans-Level 3, Kids Path, The Watchman TM Program,  Palliative Home Health Care, and Aromatherapy.

 

At Hospice Care of the Lowcountry, we believe in going above and beyond by providing care and support not based on financial decisions but on what is truly needed for the patient and family members. For the past 32 years, as the leading community nonprofit hospice, we are aware each patient and family is unique and special and deserves unique and special attention. 

 

These programs and services are what set us apart from the other agencies. Please know it is our privilege and honor to care for your family, friends and neighbors.

Board Chair Statement

The last memories I have of my mother and my father are of being at their bedside in a cold sterile hospital environment. I was younger then and had no knowledge of hospice and the difference it could make to end of life care and comfort. In 2007, however, my lifelong friend and brother in law, after suffering a long bout with pancreatic cancer, passed peacefully in the comfort of his own home surrounded by friends and family, and in the care of dedicated, caring and highly qualified hospice professionals. It was then that I knew that at some point in my life I would have to give back to this wonderful organization.

As one of only two non-profit community hospices in the lowcountry, HCL has provided the “Gold Standard” of care to patients and their loved ones for over 32 years. Operating in a state that does not require a certificate of need and aimed at the reduction of overall health and medical costs, we are continually faced with new entrants into the “hospice space”, driving down patient care days per establishment, resulting in increased per patient costs. With the aging of the baby boomer population, hospice care has become a more than $17 billion business with now over 19 for profit (corporate) hospices in our region. As these for profit entities must concentrate on shareholder value, selectivity with respect to cost of care becomes an issue. As part of “our mission” we do not differentiate based upon cost of care, but provide the best possible care to all of those in need, regardless of the circumstances. Perhaps this may be one of the reasons that we care for more than twice the number of cancer patients (who require a higher cost of treatment) then does the other for profit hospices.

In today’s world of medical insurance, the reimbursements from Medicare and/or other insurance providers do not fully reimburse the cost of hospice treatment. This shortfall is further exasperated by the federal sequester which is still in place. It is for this reason that HCL continually looks to the community to supplement the revenue stream and fund projects so that the level of care owed to our patients can be maintained. Competing in this new environment and meeting the ever increasing demands of government reimbursement and regulatory requirements in lieu of hiring and training expensive staff requires that we pursue technological solutions for accounting and reporting. Moving forward with the ability to share required patient and case information across the necessary channels of doctors, hospitals, nursing homes and insurance providers will assist the organization in becoming more efficient and effective while giving back to the community the best value for the money with which they support us and their neighbors.

As we move forward, our greatest challenge will be that of continually providing the highest level of care and the highest return to our shareholders and stakeholders. Of course, by shareholders and stakeholders I can only mean our patients, their families and loved ones, and the donors at large who entrust us to provide continuous care to their community.

CEO/Executive Director/Board Comments

· HCL is the largest non-profit hospice organization in our community. We are the only hospice organization in our area with a Palliative Home Health Care and Kids Path License.

· We have been serving the Lowcountry for over 32 years.

· Our team includes the patient's physician or our Medical Director, registered nurses nationally certified in hospice and palliative care, our chaplain, social workers, physical, occupational, speech and music therapists, craniosacral massage therapist, certified bereavement counselor, certified nursing assistants, and more than 200 trained volunteers.

· We offer many unique additional programs for our patients such as Hos-Pet Pet Therapy, Pet Peace of Mind, Hop Aboard, Video Memoirs, Music Therapy, We Honor Veterans, Aromatherapy, Caregiver Relief Fund, and The Watchman Program TM.

· We are available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, 365 days a year.

· We never send a bill to a patient nor will we ever turn a patient away for lack of insurance.

· Our bereavement services are free to the entire community, not just our patients’ families.

· Our mission is to give comfort and honor dignity for patients and their families through compassionate physical, emotional and spiritual care regardless of their financial circumstances.

Areas of Service
Area
Beaufort County
Hampton County
Jasper County
Beaufort, Jasper and the portions of Hampton County.
Board Chair
Board Chair Arno Dimmling
Company Affiliation Retired Executive
Term Oct 2014 to Dec 2017
Email adimmling@gmail.com
Board of Directors
NameAffiliation
Susan Allhusen Community Volunteer
Dr. Frank Bowen Community Volunteer
Tim Burke Burke's Main Street Pharmacy
Mily Choy Attorney
Arno Dimmling Community Volunteer
Jackie Dout JD Advisors
The Reverend Manuel Holland Holland & Holland
Rich Johnson Community Volunteer
Jeanette Taylor Jones Community Volunteer
Mike Kristoff Charter One Bank
Anna Painter Community Volunteer
Maxene Rogers Community Volunteer
Bruce Ross Community Volunteer
Steve Sherry Community Volunteer
Dr. Jack O. Williams Community Volunteer
Heather Witherspoon Community Volunteer
Michelle Wycoff IBM
Board Demographics - Ethnicity
African American/Black 1
Asian American/Pacific Islander 1
Caucasian 15
Hispanic/Latino 0
Native American/American Indian 0
Board Demographics - Gender
Male 9
Female 8
Governance
Written Conflict of Interest Policy? Yes
Percentage Making Monetary Contributions 93%
Percentage Making In-Kind Contributions 100%
Number of Full Board Meetings Annually 9
Other Boards
The tables below contain information about other groups that advise this nonprofit on operations and projects.
Executive Director
Executive Director/CEO Jenny Brasington
Experience

Jenny Brasington has over 20 years of nursing experience and is nationally certified in Hospice and Palliative Care. She joined Hospice Care of the Lowcountry in 2005 and has held positions at Nurse Case Manager, Admission Coordinator and Director of Patient Services.  She was named Executive Director in August 2010.     

 
Staff
Full Time Staff 18
Part Time Staff 10
Volunteers 200
Contractors 6
Plans
Organization has a Strategic Plan? Yes
Organization has a Fundraising Plan? Yes
Organization Policy and Procedures Yes
Diversity Policy
Nondiscrimination Policy Yes
Whistleblower Policy No
Document Destruction Policy Yes
Directors and Officers Insurance Policy Yes
Programs
Description With our WHV Program, we further our mission by learning how to serve Veterans through the challenges they may be facing from illness, isolation or traumatic life experience. We Honor Veterans focuses on respectful inquiry, compassionate listening and grateful acknowledgment. By recognizing their unique needs, we can learn how to accompany and guide America’s Veterans and their families through their life stories toward a more peaceful ending. Retired military make up 25% of all deaths in the United States. Beaufort and Jasper counties alone are home to 20,000 Veterans. Due to their experience, Veterans have unique health risks including: infectious disease, amputations, exposure to nuclear weapons and Agent Orange which have been associated with leukemia, cancers, and Parkinson's to name just a few. Mental Health issues are also prevalent in this population with cases of PTSD, depression and substance abuse. In our three county area, there is limited access to some Veterans services.
Budget 62,650
Short Term Success Over the next year, we anticipate that we will serve 65 Veteran hospice patients as well as reach an additional 350 spouses, family and Veterans in the community that will benefit from the WHV services. 88% of terminally ill patients want to spend their final days at home.   There is a critical need for care services available for patients in their homes, where they can be close to loved ones. Through our We Honor Veterans Caregiver Relief Fund, we hope to provide funding for patients and their caregivers to hire home health care for any  patients in need.

Since last year, we joined as founding members MAVSA, the Military and Veterans Service Alliance, which was created to coordinate the efforts of our area's Military service organizations to better serve those in our community. Education and outreach will continue to be key components; Our Veterans Liaison will attend monthly conferences in Charleston and share her learnings with our staff, local veteran organizations, and health care professionals. Honoring our Veterans with a ceremony presenting a certificate and pin has been has made such an impact on the veteran and their loved ones; we plan to elaborate on the event by adding a presentation of a flag and memory book. 




 

 

Long Term Success  1. Build professional and organizational capacity to provide quality care for Veterans.
            2. Develop and/or strengthen partnerships with VA and other Veteran organizations.
            3. Increase access to hospice and palliative care for Veterans in our community.
            4. Network with other hospices across the country to learn about best practice models.
Program Success Monitored BY Upon the passing of a patient, we review as an interdisciplinary team what we did for the patient and their family. Did we meet the patient and family's goals? Was it peaceful? Were they comfortable? Is there anything we could have done better? Additionally, for the past 5 years, we have collected qualitative data from all patients' families through a Family Evaluation Survey. Families are asked to describe their experience and the patient's experience while under hospice care. Questions include perception of care and which services they found most beneficial. Quarterly, HCL will review the program's success and whether we are meeting the above goals. Included in the evaluation will be a review of the number outreach presentations, ceremonies, Veterans on hospice care, attendance at support groups, the number of patients that receive caregiver support funds along with the number of hours in which home health care was provided.
Description Hospice Care of the Lowcountry is 1 of only 2 hospices in the state to offer a unique program called Palliative Home Health Care. This program is similar to hospice, except that an individual may continue to receive curative treatment. Without this license, other hospices must turn away patients that would like to continue these treatments. Like hospice care, palliative care is provided in the patient’s home and includes the same team of professionals including registered nurses , certified nursing assistants, social workers, and physical, occupational, and speech therapists. Often, an individual in palliative care does get better – possibly because of lessened stress, our attentive care and generally improved quality of life. However, this team is also available to transition with the patient onto hospice care if and when that decision is made. Patients and family members have the comfort of knowing their caregivers will not change making the transition smooth and seamless.
 
Budget $59,607
Short Term Success  Some patients are not ready to abandon active treatment even in late stage illness. Our Palliative Home Health Care Program increases the quality of life for the patient and their family. Many patients with a serious illness need the pain and symptom management that hospice can provide, but the patient does not qualify because they have not completed their course of treatment for their illness. Our goal is to offer options to patients and their families as they complete their treatments of radiation, chemotherapy, dialysis and other aggressive therapies. Palliative care is appropriate when symptoms require closer monitoring than a family caregiver might be able to provide, or when pain needs to be better controlled. 
Long Term Success Included in the evaluation will be a quantitative review of the patient census, days of care, and number of visits per discipline as well as how many patients transfer to hospice versus graduate from our services entirely. We hope to increase the community's education about this unique care option. We provided 1148 patient care days in 2014, we hope to increase this by 10% in 2015, followed by another 10% growth in 2016.
Program Success Monitored BY Quarterly, Hospice Care of the Lowcountry will review the program's success and whether we are meeting the above goals. Included in the evaluation will be a quantitative review of the patient census, days of care, and number of visits per discipline as well as how many patients transfer to hospice versus graduate from our services entirely. Additionally, for the past 5 years, Hospice Care of the Lowcountry has collected qualitative data from all patients' families through a Family Evaluation Survey. Families are asked to describe their experience and the patient's experience while under hospice care. Questions include perception of care and which services they found most beneficial. Hospice Care of the Lowcountry will continue to gather this information to allow further understanding of the end-of-life needs of our patients.
Description  Aromatherapy involves the therapeutic use of essential oils, which are concentrated oils extracted from various parts of aromatic plants. Because these essential oils are Certified Pure Therapeutic Grade and have no synthetic additives, they do not have a perfume/cologne type smell. They have subtle, non-offensive mild scents. The intent of this utilization is to calm, balance, and rejuvenate the mind, body and spirit. Anxiety, stress and pain are common issues for end of life patients, but inhaling certain essential oils can help lift the mood, calm the senses, increase alertness or decrease anxiety. Essential oils can typically offer these benefits without the side effects that prescription medicines can often entail. 
Budget $3,000
Short Term Success Hospice patients often have difficulty swallowing oral medications. Essential oils can be used in a bath while bathing patients, as part of a gentle hand, back or foot massage, or diffused into the room. Reducing stress and agitation in patient, in turn often reduces anxiety for the family. When the patient is calmer, both the family and staff benefit.

Additionally, essential oils increase ozone and negative ions in the area, which inhibits bacterial growth. They also exhibit antiviral and antimicrobial properties which can assist staff productivity during cold and flu season by reducing the number of sick days. Other benefits include relief for headaches, allergies, GI issues, sore muscles and wound care.




Long Term Success Through the initiation of an aromatherapy program, our goal is to better meet the needs of our patients and their families as they face end of life issues. Our primary reason for integrating an aromatherapy program is for the benefit of our patients and their families. We serve 350 patients annually in Beaufort and Jasper County, many of them experiencing stress, anxiety, pain or nausea upon admission to our care. We also anticipate a secondary benefit to the direct care staff and potentially a reduction in cost when fully implemented.


Program Success Monitored BY  

To implement the aromatherapy program, we will first designate a program director.This staff member will  pursue certification in Clinical Aromatherapy (C.C.A). Certification can be obtained through an online course, with funds to assist in course fee, materials and supplies needed for completion. Our Clinical Aromatherapist will then dedicate a portion of their time on a consistent basis to educate, answer questions and demonstrate the many benefits of aromatherapy in a hospice setting. We anticipate starting slowly, with the program continuously growing momentum. The program director will regularly evaluate the program's success by monitoring how many patients are receiving therapy, their outcomes as well as a cost analysis. Grant funding will help provide staff education as well as cover the cost of the oils and diffusers themselves. We plan to use the aromatherapy to complement, not replace standard medical practices.  

Fiscal Year
Fiscal Year 2015
Projected Revenue $2,284,590.00
Projected Expenses $2,183,825.00
IRS Letter of Exemption
Detailed Financials
Revenue SourcesHelpThe financial analysis involves a comparison of the IRS Form 990 and the audit report (when available) and revenue sources may not sum to total based on reconciliation differences. Revenue from foundations and corporations may include individual contributions when not itemized separately.
Fiscal Year201320122011
Foundation and
Corporation Contributions
$292,507$336,327$209,019
Government Contributions$0$0$0
Federal------
State------
Local------
Unspecified$0$0$0
Individual Contributions------
$0$0$0
$2,391,975$2,507,806$2,315,646
Investment Income, Net of Losses$717$3,376$1,029
Membership Dues$0$0$0
Special Events$0$0$0
Revenue In-Kind$0$0$0
Other$232($28,651)($29,995)
Expense Allocation
Fiscal Year201320122011
Program Expense$2,346,098$2,265,609$2,036,162
Administration Expense$249,837$294,887$418,697
Fundraising Expense$264,457$106,471$117,372
Payments to Affiliates------
Total Revenue/Total Expenses1.061.151.05
Program Expense/Total Expenses82%85%79%
Fundraising Expense/Contributed Revenue90%32%56%
Assets and Liabilities
Fiscal Year201320122011
Total Assets$1,822,354$1,686,469$1,575,060
Current Assets$652,723$997,047$560,174
Long-Term Liabilities$0$9,987$17,526
Current Liabilities$148,857$165,526$147,365
Total Net Assets$1,673,497$1,510,956$1,410,169
Short Term Solvency
Fiscal Year201320122011
Current Ratio: Current Assets/Current Liabilities4.386.023.80
Long Term Solvency
Fiscal Year201320122011
Long-Term Liabilities/Total Assets0%1%1%
Top Funding Sources
Fiscal Year201320122011
Top Funding Source & Dollar Amount -- -- --
Second Highest Funding Source & Dollar Amount -- -- --
Third Highest Funding Source & Dollar Amount -- -- --
Capital Campaign
Currently in a Capital Campaign? No
State Charitable Solicitations Permit
Registration Yes May 2016
Nonprofit HOSPICE CARE OF THE LOWCOUNTRY INC
Address 7 PLANTATION PARK DR UNIT 4
PO Box 3827
BLUFFTON, SC 29910
Primary Phone (843) 706-2296
Contact Email info@hospicecarelc.org
CEO/Executive Director Jenny Brasington
Board Chair Arno Dimmling
Board Chair Company Affiliation Retired Executive
Year of Incorporation 1982
Former Names
Hospice Volunteers of the Lowcountry