Bereavement services are an integral part of the hospice program. Following a terminal diagnosis, patients and families often struggles with anticipatory grief issues. The medical social worker and spiritual counselor are available to assist families during this emotionally difficult time, as well as provide information on common aspects of anticipatory grief. Following a hospice patient’s death, Hospice continues to provide bereavement support to grieving families. While one individual is identified as the primary contact with the family, generally the spouse or primary caregiver, all members of the family are eligible to receive bereavement services.
Bereavement services are available for 13 months following the patient’s death. They include periodic mailings to provide support and education regarding grief issue, connection with a grief support group, phone contacts. For needs that exceed the scope of hospice bereavement services, referrals to other organizations and professionals within the community are available. These services are also made available to anyone in the community in which hospice services are provided.