Monthly Newsletter

November 2016
Hospice Foundation of America E-Newsletter
Volume 16, Issue 10
In this issue:
Learn about Soul Injury from Deborah Grassman, APRN, CEO of Opus PeaceA
Deborah Grassman, ARNP, is a mental health Nurse Practitioner whose 30-year career at the Department of Veterans Affairs included being the Director of the Hospice program, as well as personally caring for more than 10,000 dying veterans. She is recognized as one of the nation's leading experts in caring for veterans nearing the end of life. Now the CEO and co-founder of Opus Peace, a 501(c)3 non-profit organization, she is raising awareness the emotional wounds left by trauma, abuse, marginalization, self-neglect, and chronic or serious illness. She and her colleagues at Opus Peace have a name for this kind of wound: Soul Injury.
"In my 30 years of work as a nurse, I personally cared for more than 10,000 dying veterans. Of course, many of those vets struggled with PTSD. But I was seeing other patterns with these veterans as they faced the end of life; the trauma they were often expressing didn't fit into the PTSD 'box.' Both my colleague Patricia McGuire [an ADEC certified bereavement counselor] and I experienced this so often that we realized we needed another name for what we were noting."
That realization led Grassman and McGuire, a bereavement counselor for the VA for nearly 20 years, to develop the concept of Soul Injury. Many hospice professionals know Ms. Grassman from her work with veterans; she appeared on HFA's program "Improving Care for Veterans Facing Illness and Death." Read her interview with HFA here to learn more about how her work with dying veterans brought her to helping professionals learn more about Soul Injury.
Beginning on January 1, a special presentation on Soul Injury by Ms. Grassman, in partnership with HFA, will be available on webcast DVD. The program is intended for groups; a 30-minute post-program discussion is required for 2 CE credits. Underwritten in part by Aseracare, Veterans Funeral Care, and the Tragedy Assistance Program for Survivors (TAPS).
See a sneak peek of the program here
Price: $25 webcast; $59 webcast and DVD
Hear Stories of Vets to Honor Veterans DayBC
The StoryCorps Military Voices Initiative provides a platform for veterans, service members, and military families to share their stories. The Initiative states that, "In doing so we honor their voices, amplify their experiences, and let them know that we-as a nation-are listening." Listen to this powerful story of the continuing bond between a veteran and his fellow soldier's grown daughter. Listen here.
Understand the Opportunities and Challenges of Hospice in the Nursing Home 
Nearly a quarter of the U.S. population dies in long-term care settings. While hospice involvement has improved outcomes for dying nursing home patients and their families, numerous obstacles exist for hospice providers. As noted in the article Hospice in the Nursing Home: Perspectives of Front Line Nursing Home Staff, "Use of hospice has been associated with improved outcomes for nursing home residents and attitudes of nursing home staff toward hospice influences hospice referral." (JAMDA, 2014).
Join co-authors of this study,John Cagle, PhD, MSW and Dr. Kathleen Unroe, MD, for a live webinar discussion of how hospice clinicians and nursing home professionals can better understand the opportunities for collaboration, growth and enhanced patient and family care at the end of life in these settings. The program, moderated by Marian Grant, DNP, will take place on Tuesday, November 15 from noon-1:30pm ET. The program is available for a full year on demand if you can't view the live program.  Individual registration is for viewing by one person; organizational registration allows an unlimited number of participants at a single address to view the program. Please honor this registration policy. 
Prices: $25.95 for individuals; $89.95 for organizations
Learn more here.
Register now for an Education Partner Package and register once for an entire year of educational programming at a discounted cost. In addition to Hospice in the Nursing Homeupcoming programs include:
  • Soul Injury with Deborah Grassman, ARNP
  • Dignity Therapy with Lori Montross-Thomas, PhD
  • Grief after Self-Inflicted Causes of Death with Ken Doka, PhD, MDiv; William Feigelman, PhD; and John Jordan, PhD
  • Living with Grief: When Grief is Complicated with Ken Doka, PhD, MDiv; Robert Neimeyer, PhD; and Therese Rando, PhD, BCETS, BCBT. Moderated by Frank Sesno.
  • Innovative Techniques in Managing Grief Groups with Ken Doka, PhD, MDiv and William Worden, PhD, ABPP
  • When Death and Loss are Part of the Job with Patti Anewalt, PhD, LPC, FT; Ken Doka, PhD, MDiv; and Jacqueline Salvatore
Understanding Hospice: Getting the AnswersDC
HFA is pleased to share The Knowledge of Hospice test, which was funded in part by HFA.  It was developed to evaluate respondents' knowledge about the scope, treatment philosophy, and limitations of hospice service in the United States (Cagle et al., 2014). The instrument is a 23-item true/false test, which is an expanded version of a 15-item Knowledge of Hospice test developed by Webb and Tucker (2009). The instrument is appropriate for adults who have at least heard of hospice. This tool is a nice way to introduce prospective volunteers and members of the public to hospice care.
Academic researchers, non-profit organizations and healthcare providers are welcome to use the Knowledge of Hospice test free of charge with permission of the instrument developers. To request permission to use the Knowledge of Hospice test contact Dr. Cagle at: jcagle@ssw.umaryland.edu. The developers retain the copyright for the instrument.  
Take the quiz here. Download a booklet version of the quiz here. Also available in Spanish here.
Become a Member of HFA! EC
Hospice Foundation of America is now a membership organization. Not sure whether your organization or you, individually, are a member? Email us at educate@hospicefoundation.org to find out.
What benefits will you enjoy with an annual HFA membership?
  • Major discounts on a variety of HFA Education Partner Packages
  • Discounts on individual videos, webinars, and books.
  • Reduced fees for special programming to use for community outreach events.
  • Access to an HFA members-only portal with a library of no-cost educational programs.
  • Expert content to help with your bereavement, volunteer and patient and family support; for example, HFA posts three Journeys articles each month for use in bereavement support.
Put your membership to work by becoming a 2016-17 HFA Education Partner.  HFA's Education Partner packages provide access to an entire year of rich educational programming. Select the tiered package that best suits your needs. Learn more here. 
Be ready for the holiday season! Featuring articles written by experts, the Winter Holidays issue explores ways to create new holiday rituals after a loss and survival tips for the season. Join the hundreds of hospitals, hospices, funeral homes and other organizations that will use the Winter Holidays issues to support their communities in the upcoming months.
Join the Nationwide Conversation around "Being Mortal"C
Almost 600 community organizations are participating in an HFA-led public awareness campaign on the importance of talking about end-of-life preferences and goals with loved ones and medical professionals. Underwritten by the John and Wauna Harman Foundation (Harman Foundation), the project uses PBS's FRONTLINE film, Being Mortal, to educate audiences and encourage people to take concrete steps to identify and communicate their wishes for end-of-life care. Community hosts screen the film for lay and clinical audiences and following the screening hold a discussion of issues raised in the Emmy-nominated documentary.  Early results from this project are impressive and indicate that 97 percent of those who had not made advance care plans before attending a community Being Mortalscreening will now make them. Aired on PBS in February 2015 and again in June 2016, Being Mortal follows physician Atul Gawande as he thinks about death and dying in the context of being a healer. The renowned writer and Boston surgeon shares stories about experiences at the end of life from patients and his own family. Dr. Gawande is the author of the bestselling book by the same name. The Harman Foundation was an underwriter of the FRONTLINE film. There's still plenty of time to get involved in this great project. To participate, the primary host organization needs to identify a second community partner to ensure broad community representation, including health care professionals. Sites selected will be fully supported by HFA and will receive the Being Mortal DVD, outreach tools, audience materials, discussion guides, media support and more, all free of charge. To learn more and to apply, visit https://hospicefoundation.org/Home/Being-Mortal-Project
Upcoming Conferences and Educational OpportunitiesGC
The International Death, Grief and Bereavement Conference at the University of Wisconsin-LaCrosse has issued a Call for Proposals for their 2017 program, "Care for the Grieving." Concurrent session and Poster Session Proposals are due on November 11. For questions regarding submission process, please Continuing Education, 608.785.6500 or conted@uwlax.edu 
The Columbia University Dept. of Medicine is holding a Palliative Conference, "Exploring Frontiers, Revisiting Challenges" on Feb. 17 and 18th. For more information, go to: www.ColumbiaMedicineCme.org 
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