Massachusetts hospice has helped thousands

With the help of at least 100 volunteers and a healthy respect for human life, a Massachusetts hospice has helped "thousands" of patients with end-of-life issues all from the comfort of their home.

The Baystate Visiting Nurse Association and Hospice brings their services to the patients, rather than bringing patients to a foreign environment, away from the familiar, western Massachusetts newspaper the Republican reports.

When the hospice was first started 20 years ago, it was run by volunteers in an effort to keep dying patients out of the hospital, according to the article.

"Very few people want to die in a sterile environment, in the hospital.

Massachusetts hospice has helped thousands They want to be home with their families and their pets, doing the things they want to do," Carol J Rodrigues, director of the organization, told the news provider.

Some of the services the hospice offers are skilled nursing care, home delivery of prescriptions, and homemaker care.

A recent study showed that approximately 1.4 million people received hospice care in 2007, an increase of about 100,000 from the year before.

Though there are about 4,700 hospice facilities in the U.S., most do not offer homecare.

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