Disruptive Opportunity: Coronavirus and Caring for Others

The term disruptive innovation has been used in business including hospice and palliative care for the better part of a decade.  Introduced around 1995, disruptive innovation simply refers to an innovation that creates change, a disruption in a market, product or thought process.

While the pandemic poses significant challenges to providing care to seriously ill individuals and their families, it also provides unprecedented opportunity.”

With COVID-19, industry has been forced to change or innovate in new ways in order to survive and thrive.  Hospice and palliative care are no exception. While the pandemic poses significant challenges to providing care to seriously ill individuals and their families, it also provides unprecedented opportunity. 

Since its inception in this country, hospice followed by palliative care have struggled with gaining widespread societal acceptance; its virtues often appreciated only after services have been experienced first-hand.  But with the pandemic and no-visitor restrictions imposed upon hospitals and care facilities, in home services such as hospice and palliative care have been able to transcend many of the restrictions to help seriously ill individuals and their families remain united. 

On several occasions throughout the pandemic year, I’ve been called upon to guide family members and friends through myriad of questions and concerns to help navigate their loved one out of a facility as well as avoid placement into a facility and arrange care at home. While the motivating factors in each of these instances was best care possible, it was also that these families did not want their loved one to suffer isolation or to die alone. 

Hospice and palliative care have a disruptive opportunity now and it’s a good time for advocates to jump to the rooftops and shout to the world all the virtues of these services.  Carpe diem!

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