[BEND, OREGON, September 25, 2023] The Oregon Center for Nursing (OCN) recently granted $50,000 to Partners In Care to support development of a program aimed at increasing wellness for hospice and home health nurses.

The ‘Care for the Caregivers’ program starting at Partners In Care is a vital initiative aimed at increasing the well-being of hospice and home health nurses, reducing burnout, and ultimately improving patient outcomes. This system-level environmental intervention addresses the high levels of stress, burnout, and compassion fatigue experienced by nurses by offering a series of inclusive wellness workshops and a wellness stipend. These resources aim to enable nurses to prioritize self-care and increase their well-being activities to prevent the negative impact of stress on their mental and physical health.

“I am beyond excited and grateful that Partners In Care has been chosen to receive a grant from the Oregon Center for Nursing. We can’t wait to begin our project- Care for the Caregivers: A Holistic Approach to Wellness for Home Health and Hospice Nurses,” said Jodi Bigness, BSN, RN, CHPN, Hospice Nursing Supervisor. “This is a great opportunity for our nurses to learn new ways to practice self-care while also bringing our teams together. I know that caring for ourselves first can only make us better at caring for others, but sometimes we all need to be reminded of that.”

The project’s implementation across 10,000 square miles of Central Oregon, including low-income and rural areas with limited healthcare providers, emphasizes the project’s critical nature. Measured through staff engagement, attendance at workshops, and survey data from nurses, the project’s success will be assessed continuously, with feedback collected to evaluate effectiveness and identify areas for improvement.

This is a great opportunity for our nurses to learn new ways to practice self-care while also bringing our teams together. I know that caring for ourselves first can only make us better at caring for others, but sometimes we all need to be reminded of that.

Jodi Bigness, BSN, RN, CHPN, Hospice Nursing Supervisor

By creating a sustainable and supportive work environment, the Care for the Caregivers project will improve nurse well-being, reduce burnout, improve patient outcomes, and support the holistic needs of employees.

“Partners In Care recognizes the crucial role that our nursing staff plays in providing quality care to patients and their families. We also recognize the significant challenges that nurses face in their profession, which can have a detrimental impact on their health and well-being,” said Greg Hagfors, CEO. “As an organization, we are committed to providing our nurses with the resources and support they need to prioritize their well-being, both now and in the future.”

This grant was part of a broader initiative by OCN aimed at fostering nurse well-being in long-term care settings. Partners In Care nurses work wherever patients call home, with many spending much of their time caring for patients in assisted living, memory care, and skilled nursing facilities throughout Central Oregon.

“The Oregon Center for Nursing is thrilled to support these projects addressing the unique challenges this workforce population faces,” said Jana Bitton, Executive Director of OCN.

Learn more about the OCN RN Well-Being Project, a statewide wellness and mental health initiative for nursing staff, and past grant-funded projects at www.oregoncenterfornursing.org/rn-well-being-project. A complete list of the 2023 funded projects is available here.

About Partners In Care
Partners In Care is a local, independent, 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization serving a 10,000 square mile region of Central Oregon. It is now the leading provider of hospice, home health, and palliative care in the region, with over 200 staff members and over 150 volunteers. In addition to community Hospice care in homes, facilities, and Hospice House, Partners In Care also provides: Home Health in the patient’s home or care facility; Palliative Care symptom management and support; a non-medical case management program called Transitions; and Grief Support for adults and children experiencing a loss. Learn more at www.partnersbend.org

About The Oregon Center for Nursing
The Oregon Center for Nursing (OCN) is a nonprofit workforce center working to advance the nursing profession across Oregon. The organization fulfills its mission of supporting “informed, well-prepared, diverse, and exceptional nursing professionals” through research, education, programming, and community partnerships. Established by nursing leaders in 2002, OCN is regarded by the Oregon state legislature as a leader and advisor for nursing workforce issues, including well-being, job satisfaction, and retention. For more information about the organization and its programming, visit www.oregoncenterfornursing.org