The importance of volunteers to our program cannot be overstated. Without volunteers we could not provide the scope of services that are needed to enhance the quality of the lives of our patients and families.
It is the goal of the volunteer program to enhance the quality of care delivered to the patient and family through the volunteer’s support and assistance of the professional team members in appropriate ways.
To assure the placement of competent volunteers within the hospice program and to provide proper controls for those volunteers working directly with patients, the following policies have been established:
- Compassionate Care Western North Carolina is a not-for-profit health care agency providing a special kind of care, often called palliative, designed to give sensitivity and support for terminally ill patients and their families. Hospice care seeks to enable patients to carry on an alert, pain-free life and to manage other symptoms so that their last days may be spent with dignity and quality, at home or in a homelike setting. Hospice care is built on the principles of Comfort, Dignity, Choice, and Control. Palliative care will be provided regardless of age, sex, race, color, national origin, religion, handicap, or ability to pay.
- Hospice considers the entire family, not just the patient, the “unit of care”. Patients and families are included in the decision-making process. Caregivers as well as patients are given emotional support. Bereavement counseling is provided to the family after the death of their loved one.
- Hospice emphasizes quality, rather than length of life. The care that hospice gives is meant to help make the most of the last months of the patients life by giving comfort and relief from pain. The focus is on care not cure.
How to Become a Volunteer
Many people express an interest in wanting to do something to help hospice after a loved one has received hospice care. We have many opportunities to do this through our volunteer program.
Some of the ways a volunteer helps include:
- Volunteers visit a Hospice patient in a nursing facility
- Volunteers in a private home can visit to give the caregiver a break
- Volunteers can run errands or grocery shop for a patient or caregiver
Visiting a hospice patient is normally like the friendly visits you make to family, friends or church members who are sick. There is no personal care involved as this is handled by professional staff. Hospice staff is only a phone call away at all times so volunteers never feel like they are alone or without help should an emergency arise.
To learn more about becoming a Hospice Volunteer, read the following message from Angie Higgins, Director of Volunteer Programs