Company: Hope HealthCare Services, Fort Myers, FL
Company Description: Hope Healthcare Services is a not-for-profit, 501 (c)(3)-status Community-Based agency recognized as a leader in providing high-quality, innovative care. Hope is accredited by the Community Health Accreditation Program, the national leader in improving quality in home care, and is the recipient of the nationally acclaimed Circle of Life Award for excellence and innovation in patient care.
Nomination Category: Individual Categories
Nomination Sub Category: Lifetime Achievement Award
Nomination Title: Samira K. Beckwith, President and CEO
Describe for the judges the nominated individual's lifetime of accomplishments (up to 500 words):
Samira Beckwith is a visionary who has made unique improvements to our quality
of life during her 35 years in the health care profession. She has created an
improved model of high-quality, cost-efficient health care and is a vocal advocate
for replicating the model in other communities.
Samira pioneered and then broadened the continuum of health care through the
enhancement of hospice care and the development of other innovative care
programs, enabling adults to live in comfort and dignity as they fulfill life’s
journey. She has given hope to children and their families, through programs to help them
cope with serious illness and dying.
Florida Governor Jeb Bush appointed Samira to his Long-Term Care Advisory
Council, describing her as a “visionary who provides leadership on the local and
national levels – passionate about ensuring the highest quality of service.”
She is active on the state and national levels in shaping public policy on health care.
Seven prestigious national organizations, including the American Medical
Association and the American Hospital Association, have honored her through
Hope for her innovation and leadership and for reaching the highest levels of
quality in health care delivery.
Samira is motivated by the question: “How can we improve health care for
everyone in need, and make it easier to access?” She has answered the question
in remarkable ways. She began with hospice care for adults and children in life’s
final chapter. Realizing that the skills and experience required for these patients
could be applied to help others who are not at the end of life, she has introduced
five other innovative care programs to date. The programs provide a variety of
services including comprehensive care programs for those with advanced illness
who want to live at home; developmentally appropriate care for children who are
dying, seriously ill or grieving; pain and symptom support for those with serious
illness; warm meals delivered to the home; and complimentary therapy programs
that include massage, art and music . Every day, 2,300 people benefit from this
These accomplishments were made because of, and perhaps in spite of, two
encounters with cancer. While studying at The Ohio State University College of
Social Work, Samira was diagnosed with Hodgkin’s disease, a life-changing
moment that occurred at the threshold of the Hospice Movement. Most hospital
staff members were uncomfortable talking about cancer, treatments and feelings.
The field of pain management had not yet been well established. At that time,
Samira made a promise to herself to use her experience to help others live a
better life, even during serious illness or in life’s final chapter. That promise
became the foundation of her career. Diagnosed with breast cancer on her 49th
birthday, Samira remained undeterred in her lifelong commitment to helping others
through their illness.
Engaging with patients, families, members of Congress – whoever it may be – she
shares a message born of personal and professional experience: “Everyone
deserves dignity and the opportunity for quality of life. There is always hope.”
List the URLs (web addresses) of any online news stories, press releases, or other documents that you would like the judges to see that support your entry. IMPORTANT: List each URL on a separate line, begin each URL with http://, and enclose each URL in square brackets. For example, [http://www.yourcompany.com/pressrelease.html]:
Reports of Samira’s work over the past several years are archived on the Fort
Myers News-Press and Naples Daily News Web sites:
Recent news coverage can be seen at http://www.hopehcs.org/Aboutusnews
The breadth of Samira’s work, particularly the innovative health care programs she
has introduced, is detailed at http://www.hopehcs.org
Provide a brief biography of the nominated individual (up to 100 words):
Samira K. Beckwith is President and CEO of Hope HealthCare Services, where
she has been a leader in improving health care on the local, state and national
levels for more than three decades.
She is the recipient of The National Association of Social Workers’ 2009 Lifetime
Achievement Award for her exemplary contribution to health care.
Samira received her Master’s of Social Work and Bachelors of Arts in Sociology
from The Ohio State University. She was among the first inductees into the Social
Work Alumni Hall of Fame and a recipient of the National Association of Social
Workers Pioneer Award.