On Wednesday, Rep. Tom Reed stopped by the Corning Center for Rehabilitation and CareFirst NY to visit with Barbara, a hospice patient and veteran, and presented her an award from the We Honor Veterans program by the National Hospice and Palliative Care Organization (NHPCO) and CareFirst NY.
“When my mother became sick, there was nothing I wouldn’t have done to cure her, but she taught me that what truly mattered to her was comfort and time spent with her family,” Reed said. “This is why I am a strong advocate for hospice and palliative care as I go about my work in Washington and a hospice volunteer in my personal time.
“We would like to thank Corning Center for Rehabilitation and CareFirst NY for giving us the opportunity to stop by and thank the care providers and speak with Barbara, a true American patriot, who deserves the best care she could possibly receive. It was a privilege to present her with this award and honor her for her service to our country,” Tom concluded.
“In 1967, a courageous young woman approached her high school teacher and said, ‘I want to go fight for our freedom,'” Mary Mosteller, Director of Development and Public Relations for CareFirst said. “Within weeks, Barbara had arrived at Parris Island, where she trained to become a US Marine. As Barbara comes to terms with her mortality, it was important to her to acknowledge her sacrifice for our Country. Celebrating life is a core value of CareFirst, and our team rallied to recruit Retired Marine Corps Major Daniel Kane, wearing his dress blue uniform, to accompany the Congressman and CareFirst in honoring Barbara’s accomplishments.”
“As family, friends, and the staff of Corning Center gathered in the dining room for the ceremony, Barbara shed tears as she exclaimed, “You made my day”! Moments like this exemplify the CareFirst mission and what hospice is all about,” Mosteller concluded.
Photos courtesy of CareFirst
“The hospice and palliative care community is fortunate to have a champion like Tom Reed,” said NHPCO President and CEO Edo Banach, JD. “We thank him for the time he gave today, visiting Barbara, an American hero and hospice patient, and for the time he is given to the many hospice patients he has visited as a hospice volunteer.”
Banach continued, “In a time when health care is changing day to day, it is vital for us to have support in Washington to ensure that we protect the valuable care that is hospice. Congressman Reed has been a strong supporter of our community and we will continue to work closely with him to ensure that more Americans like Barbara, have access to hospice care.”
Tom lead the charge to pass the Palliative Care and Hospice Education and Training Act. This bill improves workforce training, education and awareness and enhanced research in the hospice and palliative care industry and passed in the House in July 2018.
As a collaborative effort, We Honor Veterans is a national program with the NHPCO and Department of Veteran Affairs as they strive to increase access to care for and honor those who have served when they reach the end of life.