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Newport Beach Woman Honored for End of Life Care

- Monday, March 16, 2015

Arnetta Robinson, community relations liaison at Sea Crest Home Health and Hospice, is the March/April 2015 recipient of our Oliver Halsell Care Award.

“Close your eyes and imagine what your last day would look like.” This is the scenario Arnetta Robinson presents her patients on a daily basis. As community relations liaison, knowing how a person would like to spend his/her last day is as important to Robinson as memorializing the life they already lived.

With more than 20 years experience in the healthcare industry, Robinson began her career in outpatient physical therapy. But after her sister lost her 16-year battle with lupus in 2002, Robinson changed course and transitioned to hospice to help improve the quality of life for people battling terminal illnesses. She now spends her days traveling throughout Orange County to meet with patients and their families to discuss how they would like to live out their remaining days.

“Arnetta is dedicated to bringing comfort, compassion, and good quality care to patients and their families at one of the most difficult periods of their lives,” said Marla Noel, president of Fairhaven. “Her work is admirable and she truly serves from the heart, just as Oliver Halsell did more than a century ago.”

For Robinson, no patient request is too great. She recalls one man in Sea Crest’s cardiac program who loved hamburgers but couldn’t eat them for health reasons. After learning the man was terminal and near the end, Robinson drove to In-N-Out Burger to fulfill his dying request. Whether it’s a burger, flowers, chocolates or a party, Robinson assists in any way to ensure her patients finish out their lives in the best way possible. Making herself available to work any time, including nights and weekends, Robinson admits there is no separation between her personal and professional lives – the two are intertwined.

In addition to working for Sea Crest, Robinson also is Chairwoman of the Board for Pacific Hospice & Palliative Care Foundation, an organization created to provide patients with improved end of life care and families with bereavement services, despite any hardship they may be facing. Robinson also has a passion for working with people who have been diagnosed with Alzheimer’s and other forms of dementia. She is an advocate for Alzheimer's Association, Orange County, is a POLST (Physicians' Orders for Life Sustaining Treatment) educator for the Orange County Aging Services Collaborative and a past chair of the Alzheimer's Family Service Center’s "A Gathering of Friends” gala.

In what little spare time Robinson has, she visits with friends and family, travels and raises awareness for hospice and pre-planning through her blog Hip Hospice Gal.

“It can be difficult for people to talk about death and dying,” said Robinson. “When people realize they’re dying, it’s scary. I do my best to help them work through their fear and get the conversation started.”

Robinson will be honored at Fairhaven’s Oliver Halsell Care Awards banquet in November at Fairhaven’s Mission Viejo location. The banquet honors a year’s worth of achievements within the local community. Additionally, Fairhaven will make a donation on her behalf to her selected charity, Pacific Hospice & Palliative Care Foundation.

We are currently accepting nominations for the 2015 Oliver Halsell Care Awards. For more information and to nominate a deserving candidate, click here or send us an email

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