Our Hospice Services
“When your heart is broken, nothing else works.”
While caring for a dying loved one can be a stressful time, the actual
loss of the loved one is often devastating. Grief can have many effects
on those left behind, including overwhelming sadness, a sense of isolation,
inability to function normally, guilt, disrupted sleep and eating patterns,
anger and a general sense that life will never be right again. Our society
tends to believe that grieving people should have closure and move on
as if nothing happened. The truth is the grieving person’s life
has changed forever and it will take time to find a way into a new life.
To this end, Hospice of Crawford County, Inc. is committed to assisting
those who grieve with a variety of programs.
Meadville Area Monthly Support Group:
For information, please call (814) 333-5403
Second Tues. of the month 1:00 p.m. – 2:30 p.m.
890 Liberty Street
Meadville, Pa. 16335
Titusville Area Monthly Support Group:
For information, please call (814) 827-0330
5:30 p.m. – 6:30 p.m.
Hospice of Crawford County, Inc. Titusville office
406 West Oak Street
Titusville, Pa. 16354
Click here for the Crawford County Suicide Task Force.
Our services include:
- Monthly support groups in both service areas, which are open to anyone
who is grieving
- Biannual grief support / education: 6-week sessions in each service area,
including coping with holidays
- Individual support sessions in each office with a social worker
- Grief intervention and support as needed in the area school districts
- Annual Memorial Service
Palliative care is a form of care for those diagnosed with serious, long-lasting
or life-threatening illnesses. It is most effective when started early
and in conjunction with other therapies intended to prolong life, such
as chemotherapy and radiation therapy, and when multiple hospitalizations
or emergency room visits occur. During these therapies, Palliative care
enhances quality of life by reducing symptoms and side effects, such as
pain, fatigue, loss of appetite, nausea, vomiting and insomnia. It can
also reduce the need for emergency room visits and hospital stays. Palliative
care also addresses psychological and spiritual issues that arise with
a serious illness. Palliative care improves the quality of life of patients
and their families who are facing life-threatening illnesses.
Hospice of Crawford County, Inc. and the Visiting Nurse Association (VNA)
Alliance offer a cooperative Palliative Care program. VNA Alliance patients
who have end of life care concerns are eligible for this program. Through
the Palliative Care Program, registered nurses from Hospice of Crawford
County make supplemental visits to VNA Alliance patients to assist with
managing such symptoms as pain and shortness of breath, and provide education
and support around end of life concerns.
If you would like more information on Palliative Care Services, please contact:
VNA Alliance – (814) 333-7000 or
Hospice of Crawford County, Inc.
Meadville – (814) 333-5403
Titusville – (814) 827-0330
Reasons for Referral
A referral to Hospice of Crawford County, Inc. is appropriate when:
- Cure of disease is no longer possible
- Patient and family seek palliative care, focus shifts from cure to comfort
- A patient no longer wishes to go to the hospital
- Patient and family desire living out life comfortably at home and dying
comfortably at home when it is their time
The patient is considered terminally ill—your medical opinion is
that given the normal course of the patient disease that the patient is
likely live 6 months or less—for the following diseases:
- End stage heart disease
- End stage lung disease
- Liver disease
- Kidney disease
- General end stage disease (example: failure to thrive, debility)
- Neurological conditions (example: multiple sclerosis, ALS, etc.)
- HIV and AIDS
Volunteers in hospice find it personally gratifying, intellectually stimulating
and emotionally meaningful to assist those in need at a critical point
in their lives. Many of these volunteers were introduced to hospice through
the death of a family member and understand firsthand the value of hospice
care, but nearly 20% of volunteers are new to hospice. Volunteers consistently
report that helping the terminally ill through hospice is not about dying
but about living.
Participants may range in age from teens to senior citizens. While volunteer
opportunities can vary greatly from one hospice to another, all hospices
strive to constructively utilize the time and talents of those who answer
the call to serve. Some volunteers may have professional skills or specialized
expertise, but most are just people who want to help their friends and
neighbors and serve the community.
To ensure that all volunteers are equipped for the challenge of working
with end-of-life patients, hospices require that volunteers complete extensive
orientation and training sessions, as well as submit to a routine background
check. It’s important that volunteers understand the history of
hospice and are aware of the specific ways hospice works to serve the
community. Depending on area of service, additional training may be available
How Do I Volunteer?
One of our most valuable resources is our volunteer program. Our volunteers
unselfishly share their time and talents giving priceless gifts to our
patients and their families. Our volunteers are carefully screened, enrolled
in a comprehensive training program and given ongoing education and support.
Volunteers choose their assignments and their hours—giving as much
as they are able. With help from our staff and volunteers, patients can
be comfortable and relaxed and families can be free to have the precious
gift of time with their loved one. We are always looking for candidates
for our Volunteer Program. We welcome those who wish to join our hospice team.
Our volunteer training program consists of 4 sessions, 2 hours each covering
the following topics:
- Hospice Philosophy, Mission and Scope of Services
- Hospice team and focus of each discipline
- Care of the hospice patient (physical, emotional, spiritual)
- What to expect as the patient’s journey progresses.
- Therapeutic communication
- How to cope with grief
Our Volunteer Coordinator teaches volunteer classes with input from our
director, nurses, hospice aides and chaplain. For more information, please
Some types of volunteer opportunities include:
Support for patients – This can include visiting, reading, taking walks, writing letters,
bringing in music, and supervising visits with pets.
Respite and support for family members – Volunteers can assist with shopping or household maintenance,
or allow family caregivers the opportunity to take care of necessary errands
and get some time away from the house. Family members also appreciate
a visit from a compassionate friend who understands what they are going through.
Childcare assistance – This can include help with babysitting, picking up children from
school or providing necessary transportation to club meetings or sporting
events and practices. Volunteers have also made invaluable contributions
with family pet care.
Bereavement support programs – Hospice volunteers can work closely with the hospice’s professional
bereavement staff in duties that range from assisting as a support group
facilitator to serving refreshments and helping with mailings to clients
Fundraising and administrative work – A volunteer with clerical skills can serve a hospice by helping
in the office with simple administrative duties. Fundraising responsibilities
can range from preparing mailings or thank you letters to organizing fundraising events.
Resources for patient, families and the community: