Hospice Care for Veterans
Hospice of Orange and Sullivan Counties has been working with the Veterans Administration for the last decade to serve our nation’s veterans at the end of life. Only about four percent of veterans who die are receiving services from the Veterans Administration, so in 2001 a directive was given by the federal government for all VA hospitals to work with their local hospices to care for this special group of patients. We joined the Hospice Veteran Partnership and have been extremely fortunate to collaborate with the Palliative Care team at Castle Point VA Hospital. They help us manage symptoms and provide additional services to meet the unique needs of veterans. When a family has been unable to care for the veteran at home, at times we have also been able to arrange for admission to the Castle Point palliative care inpatient unit.
Hospice of Orange and Sullivan Counties, Inc. has reached the top tier of Community Partner Level IV of “We Honor Veterans,” a campaign developed by the National Hospice and Palliative Care Organization (NHPCO) in collaboration with the Department of Veterans Affairs. Through this program we gratefully acknowledge our military and service men, women and families. We aim to create a veteran centered organization through education, strategic partnership, resources and veteran recognition. Our mission is to serve our Nation’s Veterans who have served us.
In order to achieve this distinction we have worked diligently to provide education for staff and volunteers, built an organizational capacity to provide quality care for Veterans, and developed and strengthened relationships with VA medical centers and other Veteran organizations. We have improved our ability to provide support to veterans by learning respectful inquiry, compassionate listening and grateful acknowledgement. We are proud to have reached the highest accreditation of Level IV.
As part of our mission to serve our Veterans we recognize all hospice patients who have served in the military with a special ceremony of their choosing. Each honoree is presented with a pin, framed certificate, a patriotic lap quilt/blanket and card from a child thanking them for their service.
“We are forever thankful for the opportunities to provide Honor Salutes you present to us. Being able to reach our brothers thru Hospice has made all of us proud to be serving them in a way that makes them and their families happy! You have an amazing group of people that makes the last days for so many people better! God bless you!”~Chaplain Joseph Ruud, American Legion Post 1796, New Windsor, NY