What is the Hospice Veteran Partnership of Maine?
HVP is a coalition of people from Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) facilities and community organizations working together to ensure that excellent end-of-life care is available for our nation’s veterans and their families. Our coalition is part of a national network of HVPs, established by the VA Hospice and Palliative Care Institute.
Why were we formed?
Veterans often experience unique end of life journeys, distinct from the civilian population. It is our responsibility as communities to support those journeys across a broad spectrum of collaborative services. Maine Hospice Council established the first hospice-veteran partnership in the country, under the leadership of Executive Director Kandyce Powell. Through collaborative work with local hospice providers, VA staff members, physicians, clergy members, and allies from the Maine Veterans’ Homes, we laid out a map for identifying veterans and tending to their end of life needs. The success of this collaboration led the US Department of Veterans Affairs to invite Kandyce to be a consultant to other states developing HVPs, and for several years she was the chair of their National Advisory Committee. From 2008 to 2011, Kandyce was the Project Manager of a VA-funded NHPCO (National Hospice and Palliative Care Organization) project, “Reaching Out: Quality Hospice and Palliative Care for Rural and Homeless Veterans.” One of the outcomes of the Reaching Out project was the establishment of the We Honor Veterans program currently implemented by hundreds of hospice and palliative care providers throughout North America.
The mission of our HVP is to establish an enduring network of hospice and VA professionals, veterans, volunteers and other interested organizations working together to provide quality services through the end of life for veterans. Our HVP was formed to provide leadership, technical assistance, and program development recommendations in the following areas:
- Improving veterans’ access to hospice and palliative care across all sites and levels of care, so they can receive hospice care at the time and place of need.
- Strengthening relationships between community hospice agencies and VA organizations.
- Creating a comprehensive end-of-life community engagement plan designed to reach veterans.
Who are our members?
Our HVP includes representatives from Caring Connections end-of-life care coalitions, the State Hospice Organization, community hospice agencies, VA facilities, State Veterans Homes, Veterans Service Organizations, military hospitals, and other organizations and individuals interested in improving end-of-life care for veterans.
How can you get involved?
For more information about the HVP of Maine, contact the Maine Hospice Council and Center for End-of-Life Care. We offer free consultation for our member organizations, and can travel for presentations on an affordable, sliding-scale basis. We offer at least one annual educational event specific to veterans’ end-of-life care, so please check the website or join our Events email list to stay informed.
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