Congressman Tom Reed (NY-23) wanted to make a special Thank You to the thousands of hospice volunteers who donate millions of hours to help patients and families facing the end of life. Check out his video below:
Congressman Reed is himself a hospice volunteer, and we thank him for his dedication to hospice not only in Congress, but as a volunteer as well. Thank you for your passion and ongoing support!
National Hospice and Palliative Care Organization salutes the estimated 430,000 trained hospice volunteers providing more than 19 million hours of service to hospice programs each year.
National Volunteer Week is April 23 – 29, 2017 and those dedicated individuals offering support, companionship and hope to those facing a life-limiting illness deserve special recognition for the difference they make in America.
“Hospice began as a volunteer-driven movement in this country more than 40 years ago and volunteers continue to play an indispensable role in enabling hospice and palliative care organizations to offer the best care possible for patients and their families and caregivers,” said Edo Banach, NHPCO president and CEO.
Mercedes Ibarra believes sincerely in the hospice mission of providing quality, compassionate end-of-life care to those who are dealing with a terminal diagnosis. She became a volunteer at Silverado Hospice Los Angeles in 2013 and says that her experience working with hospice patients has been “life-changing”.
Before becoming a hospice volunteer, I never knew that I could love someone I didn’t know that whole heartedly,” shares Mercedes. “And I like knowing that families feel that there is someone there to support them and their loved one.”
Mercedes has shared her story as part of a national campaign, Moments of Life: Made Possible by Hospice, which shows that hospice is not about giving up, but rather making more meaningful moments possible. In “The Gift of Volunteering,” viewers are given a glimpse into the life of a hospice volunteer as the camera follows Mercedes on two separate patient visits. Mercedes and her patients dance, smile, laugh, cry and live in the moment.
Hospice volunteers often serve patients and families at the bedside but they also assist in the office, help raise awareness, contribute to educational programs, and provide fundraising support and more.
It is federally mandated under Medicare that five percent of all patient care hours be provided by trained volunteers. This regulation reflects the vital role that volunteers play in the hospice philosophy of care and ensures that a hospice program has roots deep in the community.
More than 1.65 million patients in the U.S. are cared for by hospice every year.
2017 is a year of change in Washington, DC. But with change comes a unique opportunity to influence the shifting political landscape and speak up for those who cannot speak for themselves.
Members of the interdisciplinary team know what it is like to care for patients and families at their most vulnerable times. They are advocates for their patients on a daily basis. In turn, the IDT is in a unique position to be a powerful voice for their patients. Who better to educate Congress about the role of hospice and palliative care in our communities than those frontline caregivers who spend their days at the bedside?
We’re calling on hospice and palliative care frontline caregivers to join us in Washington, DC, on July 17th and 18th for the 2017 Advocacy Intensive. If you have ever wanted to learn more about how you can protect your patients and families, understand how politics and policy influences the hospice and palliative care communities, and take an active role in our American Democracy, this event is for you!
1. The event is FREE!
2. Educational sessions are designed for first-timers and returning advocates alike!
3. We will train you on how to be an effective advocate; you don’t need a Political Science degree!
4. The Advocacy Intensive will be held at the Hyatt Regency Capitol Hill, just blocks from the U.S. Capitol. HAN has reserved a discounted rate of $235.00 plus applicable taxes at 14.5% per night.
Stay tuned…registration opens May 1.
We hope your hospice program will send staff to attend this year’s event. We want to make sure that all states, regions, and disciplines are represented! This is your best shot at affecting positive change for your program, and the patients and families you serve, so we hope to see you there!
Please feel free to reach out to Karen and Lauren at AdvocacyIntensive@nhpcohan.org with any questions!