Forney joins local hospice

Published 12:02 pm Wednesday, October 17, 2007

By By Adrienne McKenzie
Lillian Forney's job is sometimes hectic, but she is glad to be back home.
Forney recently began working with Community Hospice and covers Atmore and the surrounding areas.
"I'm the call nurse from 4:30 in the evening until 8 in the morning and on the weekends," Forney said. "If there is an emergency, the patient will call the service and they'll call me and I'll go out and assist them. And, on Wednesdays, I do marketing."
Forney covers from Flomaton into Baldwin County with Community Hospice. She used to work at Atmore Community Hospital. She's been a licensed practical nurse (LPN) since 1979 and a registered nurse (RN) since 2001.
"I used to work at the hospital and after I finished RN school I felt like I wanted to do something different," Forney said.
Forney has worked for Community Hospice before, but left to work in Mobile for a while and then came back to Hospice.
"Back in April of this year, I decided it was time to come home," she said. "I like working in my community and I wanted a job where I was paid to stay at home. I am paid to be on call and available to go out and assist when I'm needed. I enjoy it because I'm like a robot when that phone rings."
Forney said the amount of work she has to complete varies on the severity of the illness of her patients.
"It depends on how sick the patients are," she said. "Sometimes there are going to be more emergencies than other times."
Forney said there is so much that goes into Hospice that is upbeat and that a lot of people only view the downside of the organization.
"A lot of times when people hear 'Hospice' they think it's the end," she said. "It means that there is a possibility of only six months or less to live. When we come in it means you do have a terminal illness. When we are called in, we go and access the patient. We monitor the whole problem and communicate with the doctor."
According to Forney, there are times that Community Hospice goes in and a patient does actually get better. But, the main goal of the organization is that the patient is not in pain.
"Community Hospice is a non-profit organization, so the first priority is not if they can pay," she said. "The first priority is that the patient doesn't have to suffer. I feel like no one should have to die in pain. With Hospice you can die where you want, at home, in the hospital or in the nursing home. The chaplain, home health aid, social worker and nurse always check on the patient. We also have bereavement for up to a year for families."
Forney said that she feels as if she is doing what she was meant to do.
"I feel like it's a ministry," she said. "It's what God intended me to do."

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