October 14, 2013

Maury Regional recognizes Patient-Centered Care Awareness


COLUMBIA, Tenn. - This October marks the second year that Maury Regional Medical Center (MRMC) will celebrate Patient-Centered Care Awareness Month.

Building on the theme of “Compassion in Action,” MRMC continues the focus of addressing more than just the medical needs of patients and caregivers. This is a result of the partnership between MRMC and Planetree, a non-profit organization whose goal is to personalize, humanize and demystify the health care experience. In adopting the Planetree philosophy, MRMC recognizes the importance of the spiritual, emotional and social needs of patients which enables the caregivers to transform the health care experience they provide. 

“We have been utilizing the Planetree patient-centered care model for the last couple of years,” said MRMC Planetree Coordinator Joan Stephens. “Teams have been established to enhance how we address the needs of all those we serve, including our patients and their loved ones.”

The most recent of MRMC’s patient-centered care initiatives is the creation of its Patient and Family Partnership Council. The council is made up of medical center volunteers and staff, former patients and family members. Following a series of meetings, the group decided upon a number of projects that fit the medical center’s patient-centered care model. Some of these include:

  • Food Pantry: an employee-led food drive first held as a month-long project last October has continued on as MRMC staff and volunteers stock and distribute food to financially challenged families who have had members hospitalized at the medical center. The food pantry is a tangible effort to ensure the patient’s nutritional needs are met at discharge, an important part of the healing process. To date, more than 125 patients and their families have received care packages.
  • Partnership with St. Catherine’s Prison Ministry: Planetree volunteers have teamed up with volunteers from St. Catherine’s Catholic Church to deliver blankets made by prisoners at the Nashville Women’s Prison to patients.
  • Pet Therapy: MRMC volunteers work with Pet Partners®, a non-profit organization that brings animals and their handlers together with patients who may benefit from interaction with a furry friend.
  • Quiet Room: Volunteers remodeled the oncology consult/quiet room.
  • Lobby Piano: Staff and volunteers donated money to provide a baby grand piano for the medical center lobby and arrange for volunteers to play soothing music as patients and family members enter the medical center.
  • Hand Massages for Patients: Believing that human touch is a key component to the healing process, several volunteers have been trained to provide hand massages to patients. The team initially began this service for patients at the Cancer Center and has now extended it to patients at the medical center. 

Learn more about Maury Regional Medical Center, its services, community outreach events, seminars and health screenings by visiting Learn more about Planetree at