HOM to host Hospice Foundation of America's Grief Program

LUDINGTON — Each year the Hospice Foundation of America (HFA) presents a nationally recognized distance learning program to more than 125,000 people in 2,000 communities. For more than a decade, this annual educational event has been instrumental in educating healthcare professionals and families on issues affecting end-of-life care. The program provides an opportunity for a wide variety of professionals - including doctors, nurses, funeral directors, psychologists, educators, social workers and bereavement counselors - to share and exchange ideas and obtain continuing education


This year, HFA’s 18th Annual National Bereavement Program focuses on “Spirituality and End-of-Life Care.” The program will discuss differences between spirituality and religion, while also addressing spirituality during illness, death and grief; spiritual assessment and empowerment, and life review. Moderated by Frank Sesno, director of the School of Media and Public Affairs at the George Washington University, the program will be shown at the Ludington Office of Hospice of Michigan from 8 a.m. until noon on Wednesday. A local panel will be present after the teleconference to answer questions and a light lunch will be served.

Sesno will lead the panel of noted authorities that includes: Kenneth J. Doka, Professor of Gerontology at the Graduate School of the College of New Rochelle; Gary S. Fink, Chaplain and Dementia Project coordinator at Montgomery Hospice and Adjunct Faculty at Hood College Graduate School; Carolyn Jacobs, Dean and Elizabeth Marting Treuhaft professor at Smith College, School for Social Work; Betty Kramer, professor at the University of Wisconsin-Madison, School of Social Work; Reinette Powers Murray, owner of The Peaceful Journey End-of-Life Process Program and certified as a Train-the-Trainer for End-of-Life Nursing Education (ELNEC); and Martha Rutland, Director of Clinical Pastoral Education at VITAS Innovative Hospice Care.

Local Grief Support Services Manager Virginia Sonefeld encourages the local community to attend, professionals and the general public are invited. There is no fee unless CEUs are requested, but registration is required. “These conferences provide us with outstanding and pertinent information for those in the field of end of life care, but also for anyone in the general public interested in learning more.”

Each year this award-winning program is produced by Hospice Foundation of America, a non-profit organization, which acts as an advocate for the hospice concept of care through ongoing programs of professional education, public information and research on issues relating to illness, loss, grief, and bereavement.

To register for this event, call Virginia Soneveld at (231) 845-3422 or email vsonefel@hom.org.