First ever pop-up hospice IPU receives permanent licensure

Categories: People & Places.

Photo: Carla Davis.

The Heart of Hospice pop-up inpatient unit (IPU), created in response to the overwhelming need for resources to care for COVID-19 positive patients in New Orleans, has been approved by the state to transition into a permanent hospice IPU. The unit operates at East Jefferson Hospital inside the former Bridgepoint LTAC in Jefferson Parish with 15-beds.

The pop-up unit was established in eight days as a temporary unit dedicated to serving hospice-eligible, COVID-19 positive patients and Persons of Interest (PUI) patients. The Heart of Hospice IPU is now one of only two hospice IPUs serving the greater New Orleans area.

Carla Davis, Chief Executive Officer for Heart of Hospice, shares: “Though COVID-19 is still impacting our community, we recognize that a need for a hospice inpatient unit will exist far beyond the COVID-19 crisis. We have been approved by the state to transition our pop-up unit into a permanent unit and are currently serving both COVID-19 positive and negative patients.”

The hybrid unit will continue to serve COVID-19 positive patients, providing each a private room where they receive care from an interdisciplinary care team and are able to enjoy in-person visits from their loved ones who are equipped with full Personal Protective Equipment (PPE). It will also provide care for COVID-19 negative, hospice-eligible patients who require a more advanced level of pain and symptom management than is possible in the home.

The pop-up unit was initially staffed by over 80 Heart of Hospice employees from across five states: Arkansas, Louisiana, Mississippi, Oklahoma, and South Carolina. The permanent unit will create approximately 20 new job opportunities in the New Orleans market.

Heart of Hospice has served 7% of all COVID-19 related deaths in Louisiana to date.

About Heart of Hospice
Our vision is to transform end-of-life care in the communities we serve. We currently provide care to 16 regions across Arkansas, Louisiana, Mississippi, Oklahoma, and South Carolina. We believe all hospice-eligible patients and those who love them deserve the best care at the end of life.

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