Today’s hospices aren’t just places where people go to die and hospices want people to know that.
Families fight transfers from hospitals because they are scared that sending a loved one means they are being sent to die. According to a study in the US National Library of Medicine, the misconception of the term ‘hospice’ causes hospices and palliative care facilities to be underutilized by patients who could benefit the most. The research shows that 37.3% of the respondents have a misconception of ‘hospice care’ and 53.3% of the respondents have a misconception of ‘palliative care’. And 30% of respondents have indicated that they associate hospice care solely with death and end-of-life. A misconception that can cause terminally ill patients to miss out on much needed care.
How can hospices reach the public?
It´s estimated that 33% of hospices in the US are non-profit so creativity and free resources can be crucial for their success in reaching the public. To succeed in their re-educational efforts hospices have to focus on three things: Aligning on a clear campaign message, optimize communication tools (Google Ads, Google Adwords and Facebook ads), and create clear and informative content.
Hospices taking the lead in their campaign efforts
Every communication campaign needs a clear and clever message. A perfect example of this is the Levine & Dickson Hospice House ad. The message immediately tackles the issue at hand about the consumer’s negative connotation about hospices being a place to die. Their tagline spins initial conceptions, to help readers re-imagine how hospices can help patients out side of providing a peaceful death.
Backing up messaging with relevant content strategies that go in-to-depth about families fears and frequently asked questions, beyond just dying, can inform the public on the benefits of hospice services. Making the facilities become more approachable by showcasing another side of their operations.
Lastly, hospices can find fun ways to connect with the public through engaging events. Hospice Schagen has regular events. Including an evening where they partnered with a local theater to watch The Bucket List. A 2007 film all about living life to the fullest.
Another community outreach expert is Essex based Farleigh Hospice. Who goes above and beyond to create events that allow the community to support the hospice and remind them about the joys of being alive. Whether its hosting a ball or a skydiving event, its authentically reaching the public and spreading their message.