VITAS Healthcare in San Francisco Bay Achieves Highest Statewide Recognition for Veterans' Initiatives

04/23/2015

The VITAS We Honor Veterans logo

MILPITAS, CA. – April 23, 2015 – VITAS Healthcare, the nation’s leading provider of end-of-life care, today announced that its San Francisco Bay program located in Milpitas has been recognized as a “Level Four” partner of the “We Honor Veterans” campaign – the highest honor a hospice provider can attain for its veterans’ programs.

The designation, which was provided by the National Hospice and Palliative Care Organization (NHPCO) in collaboration with the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs, was given in recognition of VITAS’ commitment to improving care for veterans and for helping veterans and their families identify and access government benefits for which they are eligible.

“VITAS is proud to receive this prestigious recognition, which is testament to our commitment to provide the unique, high-quality programs and services, as well as the respect, comfort and compassion, that our nation’s veterans and their families need at the end of life,” said VITAS Senior General Manager Lisa Cooper.

Since its inception in 1978, VITAS has worked hard to honor veterans’ preferences for care at the end of life. The company’s staff members and volunteers receive specialized training on the unique needs of veterans and the ways that their military experiences may affect them at the end of life. VITAS’ team includes volunteers who themselves are veterans and bring an added level of depth and empathy to the program.

“Surprisingly, 25 percent of Americans who pass away every year are veterans, and hospices with special programs for veteran patients are much better equipped to address many of the unique clinical, emotional and spiritual needs most veterans face at the end of life,” said VITAS Veteran Liaison John Forrett, who works closely with the Veterans Administration (VA), Medicare, Medicaid and other local organizations toward that goal.

The resources of “We Honor Veterans” focus on respectful inquiry, compassionate listening and grateful acknowledgment, coupled with providing education for healthcare professionals and other staff members who care for veterans. To learn more about “We Honor Veterans,” visit www.wehonorveterans.org or contact VITAS at (408) 964-6800 or www.vitas.com.

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