As Homeland Center celebrates a year marked by glowing state inspections and the ability to provide increased benevolent care, the kudos came with a word of caution.
In the highly regulated health care field, few organizations reach Homeland’s level of quality, said President and CEO Barry S. Ramper II during the recently held annual meeting of the center’s boards of Trustees and Managers. He warned, however, that today’s success is not simply guaranteed tomorrow.
“The only way success will happen in the future is if we make it happen,’’ Ramper said. “The foundation of our future success is to provide consistent quality for residents and patients who have entrusted the end of their lives to us.’’
Homeland Hospice, which earlier this year started Central Pennsylvania’s only dedicated pediatric hospice program, continues to grow and receive superior quality assurance reports that set it apart from its peers.
“We have an unbelievably good staff that works with families,’’ Ramper said of Homeland Hopsice. “They provide a service that is almost broaching what most would believe to be impossible to do.’’
In keeping with its mission to help those in need, Homeland Center provided $3.3 million in benevolent care for residents, a 32 percent increase. The money benefits residents whose true cost of care is not covered by medical assistance and residents who have exhausted all of their assets.
To ensure that Homeland’s tradition of never asking a resident to leave because of financial reasons endures, Homeland is in the second year of its goal to increase its endowment by $20 million by the year 2020. As part of this goal, Homeland established The 1867 Society to recognize individuals and couples who have made significant, tax-deductible commitments to the endowment. Charitable annuities, trusts, bequests, gifts of life insurance and real estate are among the donations that can support Homeland.
Earlier this year, 60 charter members were recognized in a ceremony unveiling The 1867 Society Wall of Honor, a digital display set in an attractive wood frame located in Homeland’s Sixth Street lobby. In addition to recognizing members who make significant donations, the display shows many of Homeland’s features.
Ramper pointed to two key elements of Homeland Center’s success: Certified Nursing Assistants and other front-line staff who give their all every day and a focus on lessons learned from the hospitality industry.
“I have researched Hilton, Marriott and others because in reality healthcare is a service organization,’’ he said. “There is no reason why our entire health care system cannot take what has been
learned in the hospitality industry and apply it.’’
It’s an approach that is clearly working: For the fourth year in a row, a poll of Harrisburg Magazine’s more than 30,000
readers resulted in Homeland Center being selected as the Readers’ Choice for Best Long-Term Care Facility. Homeland is also named as one of the nation’s best nursing homes by U.S. News & World Report and continues to be one of the few facilities in the region to receive Medicare’s top five-star rating.
“The quality assurance reports for Homeland Center and Homeland Hospice continue to show our residents and patients are receiving a quality of care that sets us apart from other facilities,’’ said Peggy Purdy, Chairwoman of the Board of Managers.
Purdy noted that Homeland’s historical contribution to the Harrisburg area was recognized this year by the Open Stage of Harrisburg in its performance of “Stories from Home: People Who Care.” In addition to looking at Homeland Center’s founding after the Civil War to care for widows and orphans, actors interviewed eight residents and portrayed their stories as monologues.
Morton Spector, Chairman of the Board of Trustees, echoed Ramper in saying Homeland cannot afford to lose focus.
“We will be dramatically affected by changes in governmental funding, the Affordable Healthcare Act, the demands of the boomer generation and yet unknown factors, Spector said.
“But Homeland has demonstrated that it does not falter from such challenges and does not waiver from its commitment to provide the highest quality of care in the most appropriate setting available,’’ he said. “Together, we move forward with confidence and to sustain and build on our legacy established 148 years ago.’’
New Members to the Board of Trustees:
- Brice Arndt, DDS
- Mrs. Sally Klein
- Mrs. Karen F. Snider
New Members to the Board of Managers:
- Ms. Gail Holland
- Ms. Deborah Brinser McDivitt
- Mrs. Catherine N. Rauth
- Mrs. Sue Shebosky
- Mrs. Sherry Stout
Returning to the Board of Managers:
- Mrs. Babs Phillips
- Ms. Barbara Cleeland