For Hospice of the Northwest, honoring Veterans is an important part of what we do as a team. We know that Veterans and their circles of support may face extra challenges during this difficult part of their lives, and we want to be there for them.
At the very beginning of hospice service, our medical social workers will find out if a new patient is a Veteran. They will assess which Veterans Affairs (VA) benefits a patient may be able to access. They will help people know what forms or information they may need to apply for these benefits and can often make direct contact with someone at the VA to help ensure requests are “fast-tracked.”
Our volunteers who are Veterans are dedicated to honoring their fellow Vets and will arrange to provide a ceremony for these patients and their loved ones to honor their service. The volunteers provide the patient with a special pin and certificate as an acknowledgment of their service. Many times they are joined by active-duty military who also wish to honor the Veteran.
As part of the many specialized services we provide to Vets, every year we install a flag garden over Memorial Day weekend to memorialize the Veterans we have served over the last decade. In 2023, we recognized 1,279 lives.
In the last year, we have cared for 140 Vets who served during various wars/conflicts:
- World War II: 19
- Korea: 28
- Cold War: 10
- Vietnam: 42
- Gulf War: 2
To demonstrate our commitment to Veterans, we are an active and engaged member of the We Honor Veterans program offered through the National Hospice and Palliative Care Organization. We are pleased to announce that we were recently recognized as a level-four partner (four stars)!
Hospice of the Northwest is one of only five hospices in Washington to have been awarded this recognition.
We are grateful to have the opportunity to serve those who have served our country as they approach their end of life.