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PRESS RELEASE:

Spiritual Care Volunteer Team


REHAB U Transitional Care at Wilson Medical Center is pleased to announce the addition of a new volunteer service for patients in the hospital. Anticipating a January 2019 starting date, WMC will offer a Spiritual Care Volunteer Team. WMC Spiritual Care Program is a volunteer service by area pastoral care and lay church members to provide religious services to patients and their caregivers. This is a volunteer program by the Spiritual Care Team members, patients, and activities staff of WMC.

Volunteers through this program will provide weekly rounding for patients wishing to have spiritual care services as well as a rotation of "on call" services available. The goals of this program are to provide counseling and advice to patients and their loved ones on religious or spiritual matters. Volunteers, although coming from different denominations, will offer non-denominational support through this program.

Gail Billman, Program Manager of REHAB U shares, "Our overall goal is to improve the whole patient through our Transitional Care program. REHAB U philosophy is for everyone in our facility to embrace the rehabilitation process. Rehabilitation involves the entire process of improving one's life, and this includes their spiritual and mental health. Patients in our program are dealing with significant life-changing events and we want to do all we can to help them. Our patients often have a sense of anxiety that may be driven from loneliness and fear of the unknown. The Spiritual Care Volunteer Team will add a much needed service for our patients. The unfortunate reality is that many healthcare facilities no longer offer a focus on the whole patient. As we see patients from a large geographic area, there are times in which family members or friends cannot visit as often as desired. We have current in-house volunteers that may sit with patients and families during end of life times, but if these people need more assistance from a spiritual or religious area, we want to help. We are making changes to address this, and I am proud to be a part of this process!"

Billman says that currently, there are four local volunteers that are receiving volunteer training orientation in November and hopes to have schedules set for January 1, 2019. "We will continue to grow this program service, and encourage other local pastors or lay servant ministry personnel." Volunteers will be oriented in hospital-specific patient care policies and procedures relating to infection control, patient confidentiality and patient safety. Those that are on the initial Spiritual Care Volunteer Team are: Gary Larson, Fellowship of Christian Athletes Area Director, Darrel Bisel, Neodesha Church of the Nazarene, Dave Cheshier & Ray Essington, Christ Church, and Hans Hazen, Neodesha Methodist Church.