Pictured above is a copy of the Hospice Support Fund letter local community members have received in Lexington and Rockbridge County. We want our neighbors to be aware that any mailing from Rockbridge Area Hospice will have our official Logo. Below is a letter that was published in this weeks New Gazette.
Recently, hospice organizations nationwide were cautioned to be aware of mailed solicitations asking for money to support hospice care locally. Rockbridge Area Hospice (RAH) would like to take this opportunity to once again caution community residents to be wary of solicitations for hospice care supported by the Hospice Support Fund.
According to the legal disclosure buried discreetly on the website, less than 6% of the contributions to the Hospice Support Fund are used on program services, and none of it to services in our community. RAH does not share its list of patients or donors with any entity, is not affiliated in any capacity nor receives any donations from the Hospice Support Fund. We would like to advise the community that if someone is solicited by phone or mail to help “the local hospice,” they should be cautious and not commit to funds for a group such as the Hospice Support Fund nor give any information about their bank account or credit card information.
Rockbridge Area Hospice is an independent, local nonprofit organization licensed by the State of Virginia and certified by Medicare. As RAH has entered its own 2017 annual campaign, a reminder to our donors: ALL communication to friends, donors and supporters of Rockbridge Area Hospice will appear on official letterhead and is delivered with the Rockbridge Area Hospice logo on the envelope.
Donations made to RAH go directly to helping us meet our mission of treating, comforting and providing supportive care for terminally ill patients and their families to enable them to live life fully, regardless of ability to pay. Proudly serving Buena Vista, Lexington, Rockbridge County and surrounding communities for over 33 years.
Public Relations and Development Director
Rockbridge Area Hospice
Hospice professionals across the country focus on a single purpose: to provide comfort and support at the end of life. That’s why Rockbridge Area Hospice is on a mission to learn how to serve veterans through the challenges they may be facing from illness, isolation or traumatic life experience. While our mission may be straightforward, fulfilling it is anything but simple, as each patient has a unique life story and a unique set of needs. And when it comes to the needs of America’s veterans, if we are unprepared, our mission can be challenged or even made impossible.By recognizing their unique needs, we can learn how to accompany and guide America’s veterans and their families through their life stories toward a more peaceful ending.
The We Honor Veterans program teaches respectful inquiry, compassionate listening, and grateful acknowledgement and is equipping the Rockbridge Area Hospice clinical team to comfort hospice patients with a history of military service with possible physical or psychological trauma as they face end of life.
Currently there are over 4,500 hospice partners enrolled in the national We Honor Veterans program, only 809 are a "Level 4 partner". Rockbridge Area Hospice became the 89th hospice to achieve Level IV of the WHV program, the highest level in the program. In Virginia, there are 147 We Honor Veterans partners, only 25 are a level IV. Rockbridge Area Hospice achieved this status level in less than two years. To date, Rockbridge Area Hospice has served 246 local veterans through the We Honor Veterans program.
"One of the greatest gifts you can give is the gift of your time."
Volunteer Open House
Drop by anytime during:
Mon, July 3, 2017 8:30 - 5:00 pm
Wed, Au 2, 2017 11:30 - 5:00 pm
Rockbridge Area Hospice
315 Myers Street
Lexington, VA 24450
Learn how you can get involved and make a difference at
Rockbridge Area Hospice. Meet current volunteers, enjoy light
refreshments and engage in a learning opportunity where there is no pressure. We match volunteer opportunities to your skills, interests and schedule!
Wherever you choose to volunteer, there's a place for you at
Rockbridge Area Hospice. Whether you want to work directly with patients and families or in another role, you can make a big
difference in someone's life, including your own.
You can make a difference - one life at a time:
Hold a Hand Read a Book
Be a Presence Answer the Phone
Address Envelopes Pat a Shoulder
Give a Hug Touch a Heart
Caregiving often creeps up on an individual. You may start by dropping by a parents house and helping with grocery shopping, maybe even taking them to a doctor's appointment. At some point you realize that you have made a commitment to take care of someone else other than yourself.
Caregivers can be spouses, partners, adult children, parents, other relatives or even friends and neighbors. Whatever the relationship with the person you are caring for, it is important to add the title of caregiver to the list of things that you are. If you do not identify yourself as a caregiver, it will be difficult to search for resources that can help you throughout this new role.
At many times a caregiver is playing other roles as well. You may be employed full or part-time. You may also be married and caring for your children, volunteering or have other family commitments that you cannot let slip behind. Adding caregiver to the list of roles you play can often times be frustrating and exhausting. It is important to remember while you may be a caregiver, you must also continue to take care of yourself. Some things to remember are:
Above all, remember that taking care of yourself is just as important as taking care of someone else.
If a person is in a situation that has them asking “when is hospice called?” the answer is likely now.
Studies continue to show that many terminally ill patients are not referred to hospice until the final week of life. This delay means that both patients and caregivers struggle to control symptoms and pain on their own. Meanwhile, help is just a phone call away.
Rockbridge Area Hospice offers many services and programs aimed at helping patients and families make the best choice when faced with a life limiting illness. Our effort is to provide calm in the midst of chaos. Our Connections program is available to all residents of Rockbridge County and surrounding communities when traditional hospice is not quite the answer. To learn more about this bridge program and how it can help your family, click here.
Now is the best time to learn more about hospice and ask questions about what to expect. Although end-of-life care may be difficult to discuss, it is best for family members to share their wishes long before it becomes a concern.
Rockbridge Area Hospice will answer your questions and help you find the right care. Our staff and volunteers have the training and expertise to guide you through the entire information-gathering process, we will discuss all your care options and help you determine the right care for you and your family. When you call Rockbridge Area Hospice, you will be encouraged to ask the questions you may have been afraid to ask.
The following are some questions you may want to ask your physician:
Turning to Rockbridge Area Hospice is not about giving up, it’s about getting help. The most life-affirming thing you can do is seek assistance and comfort for yourself or someone else. Most of our patients and families say that they wish they had called us sooner—that Rockbridge Area Hospice honored patients’ dignity and enhanced their quality of life.
Why is National Healthcare Decisions Day happening?
NHDD exists to “to inspire, educate and empower the public and providers about the importance of advance care planning.”
Why is NHDD targeted at the public and providers?
All adults should discuss and document their healthcare wishes in the event of a crisis. Accidents and acute illness can happen to anyone at any time, but far too few adults have done anything to plan ahead.
It is well known that providers can do a better job of raising the topic of advance care planning and incorporating patient’s wishes into their delivery of care.
NHDD offers a chance to address both these populations at the same time.
Why is NHDD on April 16?
It was inspired by Benjamin Franklin’s quip that “nothing in life is certain but death and taxes.”
Is NHDD only about end-of-life decisions?
No. NHDD encourages all adults to discuss and document their wishes for any event in which they cannot speak for themselves.
How many Americans have engaged in advance are planning?
Various studies suggest that only about a quarter of all adults have engaged in advance care planning.
Is it difficult to engage in advance care planning?
No. There are all sorts of free tools that are available to start and structure the conversations, and free advance directive forms for every state and several particular interests are available to document the discussion. Rockbridge Area Hospice provides FIVE WISHES. For more information call 540.463.1848
The hardest part is often just raising the topic, which is how NHDD can help. It creates a reason to “have the talk” and provides the tools to do it.
Do I need a lawyer to create an advance directive (living will, health care power of attorney, etc)?
No. Free forms and information are available for every state at www.nhdd.org. Also, every hospital in the US is required to provide patients about advance directives, so you can always ask at your local hospital.
Are you doing this to encourage people not to seek aggressive care?
Absolutely not. We want to encourage people to discuss and document their wishes so that they get the right care for them. For some patients this may mean aggressive care and for others it means nothing more than managing pain.
How can people help?
First, lead by example. Do your own advance care planning. Then, let others know about it. For your loved ones, you want to be sure they know your wishes.
Music is a powerful means of connecting mind, body and spirit. Meaningful music also has the ability to stimulate the mind. Music is stored in the area of the brain that is last affected by Alzheimer’s and other dementias. Some say music is the gateway to unlocking memories. What happens when music reawakens memories in the elderly or those living with debilitating diseases?
The benefits of music therapy are well documented in the research and personalized music playlists are becoming recognized as a gold standard in terms of providing the following benefits as described by Music & Memory:
Music therapy is a free, complimentary service provided by our Connections and hospice program. Rockbridge Area Hospice is excited to provide music therapy to our patients in order to improve their quality of life and overall functioning.
GIVE THE GIFT OF MUSIC! Ask about how you can be involved by emailing Amy at: firstname.lastname@example.org
Music & Memory. (2012). Making the case for personalized music: A guide for elder care professionals [PDF document].
MYTH: If you enroll in hospice care, you will soon die.
FACT: Enrolling in hospice care does not mean that death is fast approaching. Studies have proved that individuals who enroll in hospice care early often live longer than those who continue to receive medicinal treatment.
MYTH: Enrolling in hospice care means giving up hope.
FACT: Hospice redefines hope. In fact, Rockbrdige Area Hospice's mission is to treat, comfort, and provide supportive care for terminally ill patients and their families to enable them to live life fully. We want our patients to make every moment count when it matters the most.
MYTH: A patient must have Medicare or Medicaid to receive care from Rockbridge Area Hospice.
FACT: As the only local non-profit hospice, we ensure that all those in our community who need hospice care receive it. Our services are covered by Medicare, Medicaid, private health insurance and our Good Neighbor Fund. We understand that sometimes people find themselves ineligible for a government plan and unable to pay for managed care or private insurance. For anyone in that situation, we are able to provide services thanks to the generous contributions made to our Good Neighbor Fund by donations from our neighbors in our community.
MYTH: Rockbridge Area Hospice is only available when the office is open.
FACT: Rockbridge Area Hospice is available for you, your family and caregivers 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. In fact, we provide after hours nurses who are available to you and your family no matter what time of night it may be.