VINITA – The Compassus hospice program serving seven counties in Northeastern Oklahoma is seeking volunteers to provide comfort and support to patients and their families. The program serves patients in Craig, Delaware, Washington, Ottawa, Mayes, Rogers and Nowata counties.
Volunteers are an integral part of the Compassus care team and are relied upon to provide companionship and dignity to members of the community facing serious and life-limiting illness. Under the Medicare Conditions of Participation, volunteers must account for 5% of a hospice provider’s patient care hours. The United States’ 420,000 hospice volunteers provide more than 19 million hours of service annually, according to the National Hospice and Palliative Care Association.
The Vinita program is seeking two types of volunteers:
• Veteran Volunteers from all military branches are critically important because they understand the unique needs of their fellow veterans. The Compassus Veterans-to-Veterans Program pairs veteran volunteers with hospice patients who have been identified as veterans to offer camaraderie and compassionate care. Volunteers also honor veterans with pinning ceremonies and other recognition events.
• Non-Medical Volunteers provide companionship to the patient and respite for the caregiver. They can donate their talents and time in a variety of ways, including running errands, preparing meals and simply listening. Remote volunteer opportunities such as making phone calls to patients and caregivers, writing greeting cards and crafting projects are also available.
Participants can dedicate the amount of time that best fits their schedule and volunteer in their area of residence or beyond the borders of their community. Prospective volunteers are subject to a background check, fingerprinting and tuberculosis testing as well as an interview and one-on-one training. Training will be provided in accordance with proper social distancing and face covering protocols.
“Hospice patients and their families face one of the most difficult challenges in life – but they don’t have to do it alone,” said Vicky Cantrell, volunteer coordinator for Compassus – Vinita. “A supportive presence and a helping hand can make an incredible impact. Volunteers are an important part of our care team, working alongside our colleagues to care for and comfort patients and loved ones.”
The mission of Compassus is to provide the highest quality and compassionate hospice care. By addressing physical, psychological, social and spiritual needs, Compassus enhances the quality of life of patients and their families. Volunteers provide support and companionship to members of the community facing serious and life-limiting illness.
For those interested in learning more about volunteering, please contact Vicky Cantrell at 918-323-6785. To learn more about Compassus – Vinita, visit compassus.com/vinita.