Research & Grant Projects

Research shows that while many people know a little about end-of-life care, hospice, and bereavement, few are truly well-informed and misconceptions persist. In addition to the free and low-cost materials that Hospice Foundation of America (HFA) provides to raise awareness, we consistently seek opportunities to engage and inform communities in end-of-life and advance care planning conversations. 

We are honored to receive continued grant support from the John and Wauna Harman Foundation (jwH) and the Nancy Lurie Marks Family Foundation to achieve this goal.

Read a New York Times article about the John and Wauna Harman Foundation - October 5, 2018

Autism & Grief Project

NLM Family Foundation Grant

HFA is honored to receive a 5-year grant from the NLM Family Foundation in July 2020. The goal of the project is to foster a healthier experience of grief and loss for autistic adults by not only empowering them, but also their family, friends, clergy, and other grief professionals to effectively support them, in their grief. The Project created www.autismandgrief.org, a website that presents a wealth of important information and resources to adults with autism and their support network.

Click here to visit www.autismandgrief.org
Click here to learn more about the Project
Click here to learn more about the NLM Family Foundation


Project Talk Trial

National Institutes of Health Grant

HFA is proud to partner with researchers at Penn State College of Medicine and University of Kentucky to launch the Project Talk Trial, a five-year, national, randomized controlled trial funded by the National Institutes of Health (NIH). Through community events nationwide, the team will evaluate different approaches for engaging underseved individuals across the country in end-of-life care planning. 

Click here to learn more about Project Talk Trial.

Hospice & the Family Caregiver
A Pilot CE Program

The majority of hospice patients are cared for by untrained, unpaid family caregivers. The need for family members willing to serve as caregivers for their loved ones is anticipated to grow exponentially as the U.S. population ages but will nevertheless be insufficient to meet an impending caregiver shortage, described by the Centers for Disease Control as an emerging public health crisis.
With support from Hospice Giving Foundation and in collaboration writer/filmmaker/physician Jessica Zitter, HFA has developed “Hospice and the Family Caregiver: Supporting Needs in Challenging Times,” a continuing education pilot program currently being tested at four hospices in Monterey County, CA. The program explores the financial, social, and psychological challenges associated with caring for a loved one at end-of-life and includes a private screening of physician Dr. Zitter’s award-winning film, Caregiver: A Love Story, and a guided exploration of the role that the hospice interdisciplinary team can play in supporting family caregivers. Following feedback received from the pilot test sites, the collaboration hopes to offer the program nationally.

Being Mortal Project

John and Wauna Harman Foundation Grant

HFA coordinated an 18-month nationwide public awareness campaign on the importance of talking about end-of-life preferences and goals with loved ones and medical professionals. The project educated more than 60,000 people across all 50 states and the District of Columbia.
Click here to learn more about Being Mortal

Hello Project
John and Wauna Harman Foundation Grant

HFA partnered with Penn State Milton S. Hershey Medical Center to coordinate a 16-month research grant project on the importance of talking about end-of-life wishes and documenting those wishes using the conversation game, Hello. Game activities ended December 30, 2018 and research data continued through the fall of 2019.

Click here to learn more about Hello

Hospice: Something More

John and Wauna Harman Foundation Grant

HFA produced an hour-long program that tells the stories of people whose lives have been affected by hospice care. It provides a glimpse into the lives of hospice patients and their families and caregivers who share their decision to use hospice care and resulting experiences. The program is hosted by Frank Sesno and includes expert clinicians who provide additional commentary and analysis. View the program here: