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Community Hospice Named AHA Circle of Life Award Honoree

July 18, 2012

Celebrating Innovation in Palliative and End-of-Life Care

Community Hospice Named AHA Circle of Life Award Honoree

Jacksonville, Fla. – Community Hospice of Northeast Florida today received distinction from the American Hospital Association (AHA) as a Circle of Life Award® Honoree for its pediatric palliative and hospice program, Community PedsCare. Community Hospiceearned this honor for this innovative local program that improves the care of pediatric patients with serious, complex chronic or life-limiting conditions.

For 13 years, the Circle of Life Award has recognized programs that have made great strides in palliative and end-of-life care.  This year, Community PedsCare is one of six programs being honored for raising the bar in palliative care, affirming the commitment to help each person with a serious illness live as fully as possible through the end of life.

The AHA will recognize the Community PedsCare program with a 2012 Circle of Life Citation of Honor on July 20 at the Health Forum Leadership Summit in San Francisco. Community Hospice is receiving the honor for this strong community-focused and family-centric program.

“Community PedsCare is unique because it centers on the needs of each seriously ill child and family, and involves our partners: Wolfson Children’s Hospital, the University of Florida–Jacksonville, Nemours Children’s Clinic and a caring charitable community, to provide a comprehensive system of support,” commented Susan Ponder-Stansel, Community Hospice of Northeast Florida president and CEO. “This program is an example of what a strong community collaborative can accomplish, and we accept this honor on behalf of all our partners and supporters.”

Serving a diverse population, Community PedsCare provides interdisciplinary palliative and end-of-life services to more than 100 children and their families each day in a variety of settings—home, community, hospital and outpatient clinic throughout the continuum of the children’s lives. “We let kids be kids by honoring each of them and their abilities and focusing on their goals, providing a specialized, comprehensive program of support for them and their families and resources wherever the child spends time in the five-county Northeast Florida area,” explains Terry Eason, Community PedsCare director.

A selection committee comprised of leaders from medicine, nursing, social work, ethics and health administration chose Community Hospice for this honor.  The committee focused on innovative programs that respect patient goals and preferences, provide comprehensive care, acknowledge and address the family or caregivers’ concerns and needs, and build systems and mechanisms of support to continue the program for future patients and caregivers.

For more information on the Circle of Life Award, visit www.aha.org/circleoflife.

About Community Hospice of Northeast Florida

Established in 1979, Community Hospice of Northeast Florida is the first and only community-based, nonprofit hospice provider to serve residents of the First Coast. Each day, through the support of approximately 850 employees and approximately 800 volunteers, the organization helps approximately 1,200 patients and their families live better with advanced illness. During its 33-year history, Community Hospice has served nearly 79,000 adults and children in Baker, Clay, Duval, Nassau and St. Johns counties—at home, in long term care and assisted living facilities, in hospitals and at its five inpatient care centers. The organization is committed to improving the quality of life for patients and their families and to be the compassionate guide for end-of-life care in our community. No one is ever denied care due to an inability to pay. To learn more about the support and services of Community Hospice, visit www.communityhospice.com.

Community Hospice is a service mark, and Community PedsCare is a registered service mark, of Community Hospice of Northeast Florida, Inc.

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Community Hospice is an excellent resource for up-to-date information on end-of-life care in our community. We invite members of the media to contact the Communications Department at any time.

Terry Brown, communications manager, media relations
Office: 904.407.6261,
Cell: 904.515.8524
Email: tbrown2@communityhospice.com