The Nebraska Association of Home and Community Health Agencies (NAHCHA) represents the interests and concerns of home health providers in the state of Nebraska. Nebraska home care services are provided by home health agencies, hospices, homemaker and home care aide agencies, staffing and private-duty agencies, and medical equipment and supplies, pharmaceuticals and drug infusion therapy companies. Health and social services are delivered at home to recovering, disabled, chronically or terminally ill adults and children in need of medical, nursing, social or therapeutic treatment and/or assistance.
Member Spotlight: Susan Deaver
Name: Susan Deaver
Company/Organization: Great Plains Health Home Health & Hospice
Hometown: Brady, Nebraska
Education: Diploma Nurse: Mary Lanning School of Nursing in Hastings, Nebraska
BSN from Midlands Lutheran College in Fremont, Nebraska
Certified in Hospice and Palliative Nursing
Family: Husband Tom; 3 grown sons: Luke and wife Becky; Jake and wife Jena; and Ben and wife Brittney. We have 11 grandchildren and counting.
Hobbies: Grandkids, bridge, reading, and walking. We are blessed to live on a lake and enjoy boating, swimming, and fishing.
Favorite TV Show or Movie? Grumpy Old Men and Pretty Woman
Favorite Vacation Spot: Ireland and Europe in general
Favorite App or Technology: Bridge or solitaire. My husband hates games and I love them, so I play by myself.
Why Did You Choose to Become a Home Health or Hospice Provider? I loved the one-on-one that home health and hospice gave me. I enjoy knowing my patients and families more completely. I love having more time to work with them, without interruptions that an in-patient setting can have.
Mentor Who Has Helped Me the Most in My Career: Gosh, so many people have been mentors for me. Julie Thelen was very helpful when I became a director. The seasoned RNs were very helpful when I was a new grad.
How Do You See Your Profession Changing in the Next Few Years? Unfortunately I see more and more regulations and more time dealing with all of those issues! I do see the home health industry growing and growing, as we look for cheaper and better care of our elderly.
Why Are You a NAHCHA Member and What Value Do You Receive From Your Membership? I mostly enjoy the fellowship with other directors. It is always great when we can put our heads together and talk about issues we are having. It is a great resource for information, to help us all keep current. I enjoy the educational opportunities being a member offers.
Something About Me Not Everyone Knows: I’m the second oldest in a family of 11 children.
What Is a Best Practice or a New Idea You’ve Recently Implemented in Your Facility? We have started a check out procedure to have the nurses end their day with. This has really helped with communicating back to us at the end of the day. Also it enforces checking emails and responding to items we need finished up.
Career You’d Like to Try if You Weren’t a Home Health or Hospice Provider: Barista (you asked J)
Share a Story About Caring for a Patient that Was a Rewarding Experience: Since I have been in nursing a long time and in home health 21 years, I have had the pleasure of working with some many wonderful families and patients.
Several stick out in my mind. I had a patient named “Shirley.” She was the worst case scenario. She had laryngeal cancer. She had become very disfigured, had a G-tube to eat, and a trach. She couldn’t talk or eat - the worst case you can imagine. We had become quite close first with home health, and second with hospice. Shirley taught me a lot. She always started our visit with, “How are you? How is the family?” She taught me no matter how bad things were she was dealing with, she always thought of the other person. Shirley was getting worse and I had a two-week vacation to Canada with my family. I hated to go, but told her not to wait for me to get back. She need to leave when she could. Of course she waited for me to be there. I got back on Sunday and Shirley passed away with me present on Monday.
The second story I will share with you was very unusual. I had a patient’s husband on hospice and the wife suffered a severe stroke and she was placed on hospice. She died within days and he lingered on. He seemed stuck here on earth. I arrived to check on him. All family was present. The family was singing hymns. He had not been responding for several days. The daughter said to her father “ Daddy, just go to Jesus to be with mom.” The patient then opened his eyes, looked up and took his last breath. Everyone in the room was silent for at least five minutes. We had witnessed something very special. Few people are privileged to witness this.