Learn more about ANX Hospice HERE: http://anxhospicecare.com/

Valerie VanBooven RN BSN:

This is Valerie VanBooven with the Senior Care Industry Netcast, where leaders with three or more years of experience in the senior care market share their advice. So let’s get to it. In a few sentences, tell us who you are and what you do.

Lucille Faciane:

Hi. Thank you, Valerie. Thank you for the invite. My name is Lucille Faciane. I’m currently the administrator at ANX Hospice Care. We provide hospice services in the San Francisco, San Mateo, Santa Clara, and East Bay Area. I have worked for both non-for-profit hospital and for-profit hospice agency before I joined ANX Hospice. I’ve been a nurse for about 34 years, so lots of experience. Thank you.

Valerie VanBooven RN BSN:

Yeah. Well, I’m right behind you there so I understand. I always tell people I am 200 years old in nurse years, so you can’t tell me anything I haven’t already heard, baby. You’re not going to have [inaudible 00:01:11]. We appreciate all of your experience, and hospice is a service area that is definitely for angels because it’s a lot to handle. It’s a lot to help the family with. It’s a whole, another world of care that most of us don’t understand until we’re there. So thank you for doing that.

Valerie VanBooven RN BSN:

Tell us, what is the best thing about serving adults, aging adults? I know you probably have many ages that you serve. I think a lot of them are aging adults but I’m sure hospice care, unfortunately, can be implemented for anyone at any age. We know that. So what’s the best thing about what you do?

Lucille Faciane:

Well, looking back over my life, I must admit that the most important times have occurred when I was actively or working for a company who’s engaged in helping others. It’s impossible to create happy, meaningful, rewarding life without being of service to others in some way. The hospice platform for me has been very rewarding for me. When we serve other people, we are not only able to see outside of ourselves but we are able to see the beauty and the good things that brings beyond ourselves. And what is there not to like about serving the adults? To be able to help a human being is a great gift. We get to be a part of their journey. The visits are what we do, at least in the hospice world, is not a transaction. It is building relationship and it’s all about the client’s wishes. It is really very rewarding. It’s a win-win for both the caregivers, the client, and the families, and for the clinicians as well.

Valerie VanBooven RN BSN:

Yeah, I would say that of all the nursing roles or all the medical roles that anyone could be involved in, it seems like a really sad time but hospice care is the most important moments of a person’s life are those … if we’re lucky enough to have a moment … some people are, instantly pass away in a car accident or whatever, but when we can plan and when we know and our families can be with us and we have a good hospice team, that hospice team is providing the most important services probably of that person’s life.

Lucille Faciane:

Definitely.

Valerie VanBooven RN BSN:

In a lot of ways, and of that family’s life. It’s interesting. I always … I say this about a lot of different types of home care, but when you read an obituary or you read about someone’s passing, many, many times, not only is there aren’t very many people who are mentioned because you don’t have a lot of space to begin with when you write one, right? But they mention the family, but guess who else is in that obituary a lot of times? Not every time, but a lot of times that hospice provider, that primary person or that company itself is mentioned there. I know that seems like, well, who cares? But people think very carefully about what they’re going to put in that limited amount of space and who they would like to thank, and hospice companies almost always thanked because they made the last days the most comfortable and the best transition that could happen. So you do a wonderful thing.

Lucille Faciane:

Thank you. Thank you.

Valerie VanBooven RN BSN:

All right. I would imagine in your career, in your lifetime, there have been organizations or other leaders or people who have really made an impression on you. Who would you like to talk about?

Lucille Faciane:

Any healthcare provider really working, especially during the COVID times in their own right, they deserve to really be recognized. Anywhere from our home health aides to our social worker chaplains and our doctors. There is someone though who has inspired me for many, many years. She has many years of experience in hospice and palliative arena. She has written many books, has had her on a talk show about dying. Her name is actually Dr. Dawn Gross. Our team is very lucky to have her as our medical director, so I would love it if you could invite her. You would really, really, really love her. I learned a lot from her through all these years doing hospice.

Valerie VanBooven RN BSN:

We would love to have her on. We’ve only interviewed one other hospice physician and he was one of the first people I interviewed. There is a difference not only in … when nurses go into hospice, they definitely are taking on something a lot different than most nursing. When a physician takes on hospice and is a director and is very involved` and like you said, written books and this is their life as the hospice area of medicine, they are a very different person too, in that their whole way of thinking is different from a lot of physicians. It’s really interesting to hear from them and how they perceive life and death and everything in between. So we would love to have her. It’s a great conversation. All right.

Lucille Faciane:

I will let her know.

Valerie VanBooven RN BSN:

Yeah. So let’s talk a little bit about marketing online. Now I would imagine, I know [inaudible 00:07:14] that you probably get a whole lot of health care referrals and personal referrals from people in your community. You’ve been around for a long time and you probably get a lot of referrals, but online marketing has also been a great part of what we do, especially in the last year when it’s hard for us to network. How has that affected you guys?

Lucille Faciane:

We do have a website that provides information about hospice, but again, really, as I mentioned earlier, hospice is all about building rapport, relationship, and how do you spotlight that in a website? Right? It’s been challenging since March, with many family members not comfortable about having a lot of people come into their homes or even facility. The team members has been very creative in doing Zoom, doing FaceTime, phone calls, following up on emails. That has been extra challenging for our sales rep …

Valerie VanBooven RN BSN:

Oh yeah.

Lucille Faciane:

… to be going out there, right? Into hospitals, clinic, with the lockdowns, So quite challenging for them. So they also have been very creative and sending emails, describing the service. Putting that, how passionate you are about the service that you do and why you do what you do is very challenging for our sales rep, but we are very lucky to have a writing and editing coach, Christina Dunham and company who helps us create fun, professional, and personalized emails. But what we have discovered is the relationship between the sales rep and the clinical team. The clinicians could be the bridge to the patients and the facilities. Again, very challenging in how to put that in email. I mean, you can say what your mission, what your vision is, and the philosophy, but …

Valerie VanBooven RN BSN:

How many times-

Lucille Faciane:

… and up values, how do you deliver that? Because we deal with emotions. We deal with touching. We deal with face to face interaction. So it has been challenging, but the constant telephone calls actually has helped us and many of the family members have welcomed us in their homes.

Valerie VanBooven RN BSN:

Nice. Yeah, that’s good. I know it’s been really hard for everybody. I will say though, your PR team or Christine, she submitted a, and I’m just giving her a little pat on the back here. She submitted a social media post that she had put out for National Social Work Month on one of your Facebook pages and she won our contest for the month of March.

Lucille Faciane:

Oh, great.

Valerie VanBooven RN BSN:

Yeah, so she got a little gift certificate for being … I mean, and really, it was all about showing, let’s show each other how we can market during a pandemic and still make a difference. It was a simple post that she put up, but the amount of engagement that she got from it was pretty incredible. Anyway, it was a great example of someone who does a really good job with that so we appreciated that from her. Yeah, absolutely.

Valerie VanBooven RN BSN:

All right. What piece of advice would you give to other providers out there?

Lucille Faciane:

Advices would be to believe in the value of the service or product that you sell and do it right. We are dealing with human beings and they’re not commodities, so let’s do the right thing for them. People see us as experts so we need to give them the right information. During this pandemic, it is best to really reach out to them whom you’ve had business with. So people who are in the business of selling insurance or are a caregiving agency, even if you’ve done business them, reach out to them and see how they’re doing. Just because you’ve had an agreement before, try and reach out to them. They might be able to give you more business. But again [crosstalk 00:12:07]. Right? But as human beings, especially during this time, it is this very difficult. Treat the customers as if they are your family members. And yes, a lot of reaching out. As we all know, mental illness has been a big issue during this pandemic so, reach out to them. They have allowed us to be part of their home, part of their life, financial issues, so I would reach out to them.

Valerie VanBooven RN BSN:

Yeah, absolutely. Great advice. Great advice. Okay, so my last question is this. When you have a win in life or in business, how do you like to celebrate? That could be anything — birthdays, weddings, it could be someone who just, you know you made that family member happy that day or something like that. Anything.

Lucille Faciane:

Well, for our company, while we have this what we call wow moment group chat. If anyone has any gone above and beyond what they do for patients and families, we just give them a shout out in the group chat. We’ve done Zoom bingos, we’ve done Zoom picnics. Hopefully this year we will be able to do in-person picnics. We were voted to be, for third year in a row, to be the best place to work in San Francisco so that really tells us a lot, even during this COVID times. We’re very, very happy about that. We’ve done a lot of Zoom meetings, weekly and daily, and a lot of us, a lot of celebration. Birthdays, we do shout out for every birthday celebrant in our company and even with our patients. Even so during this time, we’re bringing them cakes to say happy birthday. So a lot of win and a lot of exciting stuff that’s happening in our company.

Valerie VanBooven RN BSN:

It sounds like you guys have really taken a creative approach to staying on top of technology and being able to really connect with not only other people out there, but your own staff internally and across the San Francisco area. I guess California is going to start opening back up in June so you guys are going to see a little bit of change in some things coming up so that’s awesome news. We all hope that this is … I know it’s not behind us, but getting behind us.

Lucille Faciane:

Right.

Valerie VanBooven RN BSN:

[inaudible 00:15:00] We all have our fingers crossed that all the things that we’re doing are the right things and being careful. Thank you very much for sharing your wisdom with us today and for being on the show and taking time out of your busy day to help us. Thank you very much.

Lucille Faciane:

Thank you, Valerie. Thank you. Thank you so much.