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Hospice Maui not involved in case described in newspaper

VIEWPOINT

As the chief executive officer of Hospice Maui, I wish to point out something important: For over 30 years Hospice Maui, a local nonprofit, was the only hospice program on Maui. While that changed in 2014, in the article “Caregiver subject of wrongful death suit” on the front page of The Maui News on May 5, the use of the generic term “hospice care” was interpreted as “Hospice Maui care” by many readers who have approached our board and staff.

While on subsequent pages it was clarified that Hospice Maui was not the hospice involved, some readers have understandably concluded that it was, and we would like to shed light on this misperception:

• Hospice Maui was not the hospice that was involved in this situation.

• Hospice Maui staff and volunteers may not and would not accept any gift of more than nominal value. Those who wish to give something of value in consideration of the care they receive can and do donate to our organization, which supports our ability to give that care.

• Hospice Maui complies with all federal guidelines, and does not admit any patient whose primary diagnosis is not a clearly documented terminal illness.

• Hospice Maui does not use drugs or any other means to shorten people’s lives.

• Hospice Maui only employs professional staff and trained volunteers in caregiving roles with those we serve.

We at Hospice Maui feel privileged to be allowed into people’s homes to provide compassionate and professional assistance to those who are seriously ill and their family members. We treat this as a sacred trust, and we go to great lengths to earn and preserve that trust. We are doing all we can to correct the potential negative picture that this article might have inadvertently created.

We are asking for everyone’s help in correcting this unfortunate misperception.

* Dr. Gregory LaGoy is the chief executive officer of Hospice Maui Inc.