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Can’t say enough good about hospice

Bob Allison of Glencoe cannot say enough about the care his family received from Allina Health Hospice when his father-in-law, John Allison, was diagnosed with Stage III cancer.
From bringing John jelly beans for his birthday and Christmas to providing care for the family after John’s death, the hospice program was outstanding, said Bob Allison.
“You will never, ever, hear me say anything bad about them,” said Bob Allison. “They were tremendous.”
John Allison moved in with his daughter and son-in-law, Jean and Bob Allison, about eight years ago, said Bob Allison.
In July 2014, John Allison was diagnosed with cancer.
“They told us he had two weeks to six months to live,” said Bob. “He passed away 11 months later.”
Shortly after the diagnosis, the family was contacted by hospice.
“They asked if there was anything they could do for us,” said Bob. “So we set up an appointment.”
Bob Allison said the program provided care not just for John, but the whole family. The Allisons were appointed a social worker, and a visiting nurse was assigned to John.
Bob said John’s cancer didn’t show noticeable symptoms for several months, but a nurse would visit weekly to monitor his vitals “and just check in on how he was doing.”
The family also had access to a chaplain.
John was “never much on religion,” said Bob, and initially turned down the chaplain’s visits. But the family convinced him to allow the chaplain to visit.
“They never talked about religion; they just talked,” said Bob Allison. “She would come about once a month or so and they would just visit.”
And the social worker, chaplain and nurse all came to know John personally. Knowing he always kept a dish of jelly beans by his chair, the social worker and nurse brought him jelly beans for his birthday and Christmas.

For more, see the Jan. 13 print edition of The Chronicle.