Direct Care Hospice Education

The Direct Care Hospice Education program prepares volunteers to provide direct care to hospice clients and families
in compliance with Maine State regulations

Direct Care Volunteers do not provide physical care

A certificate is awarded when the participant achieves the program outcomes and has completed 20 hours of study which includes the Core Curriculum (11 hours) and the Direct Care Hospice Education module (9 hours)
CORE CURRICULUM Outcomes        print a copy

Children’s Developmental Stages and Understanding of Death [1 hour]
    Examine developmental perspectives of children’s growth (developmental and cognitive stages)
    Describe how children acquire an understanding of death

Communication Skills
[1.5 hours]
    State the difference between a social relationship and a helping relationship
    Demonstrate reflective listening skills
    Demonstrate effective body language
    Identify and avoid barriers to helpful communication
    Allow the client and family members to share their experiences related to the loss
    Be prepared to respond openly and honestly when children and/or adults ask questions about
        dying or death

[1 hour]
    Respect value systems of the hospice person and family
    Identify and keep personal boundaries
    Maintain confidentiality of hospice person/family information at all times
    Read the Pine Tree Hospice Confidentiality Policy
    Recognize situations in which Mandated Reporting is necessary
    Identify the role of the volunteer when abuse or domestic violence is suspected or confirmed

Family dynamics
 [1 hour]
    Identify family dynamics expected to occur during the end of life
    Describe the role of the volunteer in dealing with complex family issues and dynamics
    Identify the role of the volunteer when domestic violence is suspected or confirmed

Grief, loss and transition
[1.5 hours]
    Examine the concept of coping with loss and change
    Define the different types of grief, including anticipatory grief
    State cognitive, behavioral, physical and emotional manifestations of grief
    Recognize situations that can interfere with coping with grief
    Identify ways a volunteer can assist a person or family with transitions and losses related to
        life threatening illnesses and death

Hospice Philosophy [.5 hour]
    Discuss the philosophy and purpose of a volunteer hospice program
    Describe services offered by Pine Tree Hospice
    Become familiar with the Pine Tree Hospice Mission Statement and the Maine State Regulations
        governing a volunteer hospice program
    Briefly describe the difference between a volunteer hospice and a Medicare hospice
Personal Death Awareness [1 hour]
    Examine personal views and beliefs about death
    Achieve a level of comfort in discussing death
    Discuss issues related to advanced care planning and ethical wills

Personnel Issues [.5 hour]
    Describe the Pine Tree Hospice organizational structure
    Read and comply with the Pine Tree Hospice Sexual Abuse Policy, Elder Abuse Policy, and
        Infection Control Policy
    Review and plan to complete and submit required paperwork to the Pine Tree Hospice office
        on time
    Identify the appropriate resource person(s) when questions or problems arise

Spirituality [1 hour]
    Define and state the goals of spiritual care
    Identify behaviors to avoid when giving spiritual care
    Discuss how a volunteer can help a hospice person/family to achieve the spiritual goal of faith,
        hope and love
    Discuss ways of praying with a person/family when invited or with permission
    Identify resources in the community that can offer spiritual care

Stress Management: Conventional And Complementary Therapies [1.5 hr]
    Define stress, name some causes of stress, and recognize how stress affects us and those around
        us: body, mind, feelings and spirit
    Discuss balanced nutrition, physical activity, restful sleep, joyful diversion and service to others as
        conventional ways of managing stress
    Briefly discuss the origin, beliefs and current practice of some complementary therapies
    Select and use conventional and complementary therapies for yourself and others to relax, to
        minimize pain, and/or to promote physical, mental and spiritual wellbeing
    Consult the NIH National Center for Complementary and Alternative Medicine website for current
        information (
    Support people who use complementary therapies

Volunteer Roles: and Introduction [.5 hr]
    Discuss the roles and general expectations/boundaries as a PTH volunteer

HOSPICE EDUCATION MODULE Outcomes        print a copy

Funeral Arrangements [1.5 hours]
    Become comfortable discussing a list of tasks, such as funeral arrangements, with a hospice
        person and/or family
    Identify funeral services available in the community

Multidisciplinary Management And Hospice Resources [1 hour]
    Identify community resources for hospice and bereaved people and families
    Identify the appropriate resource person when problems arise
    Explain the differences between the work of Pine Tree Hospice volunteers and Community Health
        and Counseling Nurses
    Discuss essentials of group facilitation enabling a hospice volunteer to participate with formal and
        informal discussion groups

Pain and symptom management [2 hours]
    Briefly describe health problems commonly experienced at end-of-life (ie COPD, degenerative
        neurological diseases, CHF, sudden cardiovascular and cerebrovascular events, pneumonia,
        systemic infection, kidney failure, liver failure, metastatic cancer)
    Define palliative care
    Use a pain rating scale to assess and document level of pain
    Discuss health problems associated with various chronic Illnesses
    Identify medical interventions in the management of pain and other symptoms that may occur
        during the dying process
    Identify ways a volunteer can assist a person receiving palliative care

Psychological perspectives on death and dying [1 hour]
    Describe the Kubler-Ross' stages of dying
    Describe the phases of dying according to Pattison and/or Doka
    Identify the physical, psychological, social, and spiritual tasks of coping with dying as described
        by Corr

Support During Stages Of Dying [2 hours]
   Discuss ways a volunteer can assist a hospice person/family to cope with the various needs and
        losses during the dying process
   Identify the unique nutritional needs of the dying person
   Practice doing a "Life Review" or "Guided Reniniscence"

Volunteer roles [1.5 hours]
    State the responsibilities expected of a hospice volunteer
    Know where to find a copy of the Pine Tree Hospice Policy Manual
    Know what a volunteer should do in the home when death is imminent or has occurred
    Read and sign the forms to be filed in the Pine Tree Hospice office