Why Become a Hospice Volunteer?
September 07, 2017
By Kim Yeatts, Savior Hospice and Palliative Care
Are you compassionate, loving, giving, and offer way more of your time than you actually have available for those in need?
If that is you, hospice volunteering would be a perfect fit.
A hospice volunteer is made from a unique mold. They are rare and special in more ways than you can imagine.
What does it take to be a hospice volunteer? I’ll answer that question, but first let’s take a look at why hospices use volunteers as often as they do.
Why volunteers are important?
Many patients and families of patients will ask, “Why do hospices use volunteers? Do they not have enough employees?”
Technically speaking, when hospice care became a Medicare benefit in 1982, written into the law signed by President Ronald Reagan was the requirement that community volunteers had to provide a minimum of five percent of total patient care hours. It is one of the things that makes hospice care unique in healthcare.
So, legally, any hospice accepting Medicare must have volunteers.
However, while it might be a legal necessity, our volunteers are treasured members of the Savior Hospice family!
Our volunteer hospice caregivers are some of the most passionate, patient, loving people you will ever meet. Many times, they bring with them the experience of dealing with crisis or family tragedy. They have the resilience to look at patients with positivity, even in the face of extreme negativity and the prospect of death.
Our hospice volunteers are the beating heart of Savior Hospice. They ask for nothing, but give everything.
What does it take to be a volunteer?
Most individuals who decide to become our volunteers are already familiar with hospice situations. They are familiar with life and death, with offering unconditional support to those near the end of their lives and their families.
As a hospice volunteer, you need to…
- Attend the volunteer orientation
- Be dependable
- Be patient
- Be a listener, and comfortable in silence
- Know your strengths, your limits, and when to say no
- Be non-judgmental
- Accept that needs can be physical, emotional, or spiritual
- Respect all beliefs, all religious customs, and the lack of belie
Because we are governed by Medicare, all our volunteers are required to complete the necessary paperwork, pass all background checks, attend orientation, and supply the following documents:
- Driver’s license
- For I-9 verification: passport or driver’s license and social security card, or birth certificate
- Auto insurance declaration page
- Copy of driving record
- Copy of TB test results. If not current within the last year, a test can be administered by a Savior Hospice qualified employe
Each volunteer will work directly with our volunteer coordinator to decide on how much time you have to commit, what areas you would like to volunteer in, what special talents/experiences/trainings you possess that could be useful in your volunteer experience, as well as what your goals are in becoming a volunteer. Not all volunteers need to work directly with our patients and families. There are many areas within our hospice that your time and talents will be greatly appreciated.
If you’d like to learn more about becoming a volunteer with the Savior Hospice family, please stop by our home office at 4530 E. Shea Blvd., Suite 160, Phoenix, or call us at 480-320-4733. Feel free to contact Kim Yeatts directly at 480-688-4040 or by email at firstname.lastname@example.org. At Savior Hospice and Palliative Care, our greatest goal is “Making Every Moment Matter!”
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