About us: Planetree

Planetree is people-centered care

Columbia Memorial Hospital, including its clinics and services, is a Planetree-Designated Patient Centered Care Facility. What that mouthful means is that the all the caregivers at this hospital—from the front office staff to doctors, from administrators to housekeepers—are committed to giving you and your family quality care that respects your needs and wishes.

Here at Columbia Memorial Hospital, we are constantly looking for ways to improve the care we provide. You can help us in our efforts by sharing your comments or concerns with our Quality Department.

The history of Planetree

The Planetree philosophy was founded in 1978 by a patient, Angelica Thieriot, after several traumatic hospital experiences. Her experience left her with mixed emotions—the high-tech environment was commendable, but the lack of personalized care during her stay was appalling. Nurses hurried in and out of her room without becoming familiar with her as an individual, not to mention familiarizing themselves with her medical chart. She spent hours staring at blank walls, which left her feeling lonely and afraid.

She formulated her vision of a new type of hospital where patients get support and healing on all levels—a place where individuals could learn more about healthcare and medicine in order to become active participants in their own care and well-being. She founded the Planetree organization, taking it’s name from the tree that Hippocrates sat under to teach the first medical students in ancient Greece. In 1985, with the same commitment of Hippocrates, Planetree was created. A 13-bed medical/surgical unit in a large San Francisco medical center became the first Planetree unit in the country.

Since then, Planetree has been an internationally recognized leader in pioneering patient-centered care. Planetree has received national recognition, with feature articles in Prevention magazine, Healthcare Forum Journal, Hospital & Health Networks, Nursing Times, The New York Times, The Quality Letter for Healthcare Leaders, Health Facilities Management, Trustee Magazine, The Journal of the American Medical Association, and Newsweek Japan.

In more than 275 healthcare settings around the world, Planetree is demonstrating that patient-centered care is not only empowering as a philosophy but viable, vital and cost-effective as a practice. Planetree-affiliate-sites are currently operating in a variety of health care settings, with individual adaptations incorporated by each site to meet its unique needs. These affiliates range from small rural hospitals (as few as 25 beds) to large urban medical centers (as many as 2,163 beds), and include acute and critical care, emergency departments, long-term care, outpatient services, ambulatory care and community health centers.

Columbia Memorial Hospital became a Planetree-affiliated hospital in December 2000, and a Planetree-designated hospital in July 2013. Since 2000, we have been incorporating the Planetree philosophy throughout the hospital. Although much has been accomplished, we are continuing to expand our offerings as a Planetree hospital and are excited about the many changes planned for the future. From the redesign of interior spaces to the Healing Garden; from open medical records to open visiting hours; and care partners to pet therapy, much has been accomplished in improving not only our patient experience but the staff experience as well. For more information about Planetree, visit their website at www.planetree.org.

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Patient holding dog