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  • Writer's pictureKyle Jones

Welcome to Faith, Hospice, Love

Thank you for visiting the Faith, Hospice, Love website. We hope that the information here

provides the necessary knowledge to help you and your family make informed decisions about end-of-life care. However, I realize that when you think of the word hospice many things come to mind. Understandably, there’s some trepidation involved, but we believe that education trumps trepidation!

Kyle Jones, Program Facilitator

In our effort to educate, we have secured grant funding from the Rita & Alex Hillman Foundation. This award is vital to our multicultural outreach efforts, supporting our “Faith, Hospice, Love” initiative, a minority outreach program providing HOPE in hospice care. The mission of this initiative is to help expand the acceptance and understanding of hospice and palliative care among African Americans, especially in rural Arkansas.

This year, Arkansas Hospice celebrates 30 years of service to this great state. Over the course of that time we’ve seen significant growth, change, and positive outcomes. Though we are proud of this reality, we are also cognizant of the historical hinderances that lead to significant care disparities. We realize that we are only three to four generations removed from slavery. Eradicating this injustice is a triumph. But other portions of this history (see: Tuskegee Experiment) perpetuate negative perceptions among Black Americans and other minorities— a tragedy. This history impacts the rate at which minorities seek medical treatment of any form.

The stats paint a bleak picture. Nationally, usage rates of End-of-Life care for African Americans fall behind that of their Caucasian counterparts. The NHPCO Facts and Figures 2020 edition notes, “(Using national Medicare statistics) 50.7 percent of Medicare recipients utilize Hospice care overall. Of those 50.7%; 82% are Caucasian and only 8.2% are African American.” These disparities do not arise out of “thin air.” Tragically, history has been a hindrance. Portions of our history perpetuate negative perceptions among Black Americans and other minorities. As Duke Divinity School Professor Richard Payne once stated, “African Americans and other minorities are at greater risk of not dying well.” This history impacts the rate at which minorities seek medical treatment of any form. When it comes to end of life and palliative care, these perceptions have a grave impact.

Faced with this challenge, Arkansas Hospice, Inc. is currently engaged in minority outreach efforts to change this trend. Through education, research, and other on-going opportunities, we hope to increase access for all underserved populations. Education has always been valued in our communities. Many have sacrificed for the opportunity to receive information, because we’ve always viewed education as the pathway to liberation. The Faith, Hospice, Love program and in particular this website seek to be an educational resource. We may have been deceived in the past, but now we can have the information in our own hands.

We look forward to sharing more information, via this website, as we engage our community to triumph over the tragedies we face. Please return to our site periodically to see updates and receive other pertinent information. These issues can only be overcome with education. As an old adage goes: “Each one must teach one.” Please take time to share this information and feel free to contact me for more detailed information or to schedule an in-depth discussion with your community or church group.

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