Hometown Owensboro, Ky. but currently live in Taylorsville
Family: Husband John and our children, John Mark (3 years old) and Elizabeth Jean (9 months)
Hobbies: I am an avid UK fan and spend much time going to basketball
and football games. Music is also a lifelong hobby of mine and I sing and play
the piano on a regular basis.
Currently reading: Reading through Daniel and Acts in the Bible and recently started Service Fanatics by Dr. James Merlino of the Cleveland Clinic.
Favorite vacation spot: My favorite trip was to Italy. I love the beauty and history of the old city amid all things new.
Medical News: First, congratulations on being named Emerging Leader in Hospice and Palliative Medicine by the American Academy of Hospice and Palliative Medicine! What does this recognition mean to you?
Bethany Cox Snider: It is honestly quite humbling. I do not see myself as an emerging leader and truly believe I have been blessed by great teams of people who elevate me every day and deserve this recognition. I feel blessed to do this work and am grateful I found this specialty.
MN: How did you begin your career in healthcare?
BCS: I always knew I wanted to be a physician but didn’t find my path to hospice and palliative medicine until residency. I was caring for very sick patients in the intensive care unit and pondered if our care was always what they wanted. I sought out family conversations and difficult discussions to better clarify those questions in my mind. I was fortunate to have an attending see that passion within me and recommended I explore palliative care. I never turned back and am passionate about the work we do every day.
Leadership was never on my road map, but I found my way to it very naturally and enjoy being able to impact care for our whole community in hopes of enhancing the quality of life for everyone, while continuing to empower families to choose the care that optimizes their quality of life.
MN: Who do you look to as a mentor?
BCS: Dr. Joe Rotella is my mentor and paved the way for me. He is calm and thoughtful and believes in the value of the team and the importance of investing in his people. He continues to invest in my growth and development and always provides wise counsel. He always looks for joy in his life and that has been a good lesson for me as I seek joy and gratitude while trying to show grace.
MN: What are your goals while at Hosparus for next few years?
BCS: This is a pivotal time for our industry as the future of hospice and palliative medicine in the community setting is evolving. Over the next two years, we must continue to elevate our expertise and quality of care to ensure our communities receive the highest quality of care during such a vulnerable time. We also must continue to innovate and look for ways to serve our patients and families sooner.
It saddens me that most of our patients are on hospice care for two weeks or less, when they are entitled to six months or more. We have developed new programs outside of hospice to fill a gap in our communities when facing serious illness to improve access to hospice, lengths of stay on hospice and help people live their best lives in their home.
My purpose is to empower families to choose the care that enhances their quality of life and that starts with education to our communities and will require a grassroots effort to change perspectives on hospice care.
MN: What advice would you give to someone interested in a career in your field?
BCS: I would encourage anyone who is unsure of what we do, to look and reach out. I had no concept of this specialty until I spent some time with an agency in residency. We have ample time to care for patients and get to meet them in their homes. This shines a light on their circumstances, challenges and provides us with insight as to what matters most for them. It is such meaningful work and is rewarding every day. It also teaches you to be grateful for your own blessings.
If anyone is even considering this field, please reach out! I would love to show them the beauty of what we do and how there can be a different way for caring for these patients.
MN: If you had to choose a different career what would it be?
BCS: That’s easy. Piano teacher.
MN: What is your most significant accomplishment?
BCS: My two children. They are my life’s greatest blessing and accomplishment. I was amazed at what that whole journey involved and do not take for granted those two precious gifts. My family is what matters most to me and what I am so proud of each day.