Tag Archives: Spiritual Care Coordinator

“Thank You” to the dedicated Central New Hampshire VNA & Hospice Volunteers

Since the Hospice movement was started by volunteers, it is only fitting that Central New Hampshire VNA & Hospice celebrate and thank our amazing volunteers who help serve our patients, families and community. On Tuesday, May 23rd, the annual Volunteer Appreciation dinner was held at the Taylor Community, Woodside. Over 50 volunteers along with Volunteer Coordinator, Randy Macdonald; Interim CEO, Christine Long; Chaplain, John Davies and Hospice Director and Chief Clinical Nurse, Jennifer Legassie enjoyed a wonderful dinner along with entertainment and education by bear enthusiast, Ben Kilham.

This event helps the agency honor those amazing people who continue to give of themselves to help those in need. Awards were given for 5, 10 and 15 years of service as well as the “Essential Piece of the Puzzle” award that recognizes the one volunteer who has gone above and beyond by taking on several volunteer roles to help complete the puzzle of patient and family needs. This year the award was presented to Ginny Caple who is on the Bereavement team, the Spiritual Care team as well as the We Honor Veteran’s team.

Guess Who Was Born in 1918?

Physical Therapy, Home, Laconia, Meredith, Glford

Central New Hampshire VNA & Hospice will be entering it’s Centennial Year!!!  Please join us for our Centennial Celebration and 2016 Annual Meeting on September 28th at The Inn at Mill Falls Church Landing, Meredith, NH.  Cocktails and hors d’oeurves starting at 5:00pm, Welcoming remarks and A Year in Review at 5:45 then a presentation by Professor Molly Girard Dorsey of the University of New Hampshire, followed by a Buffet Dinner.

RSVP is required.  Please inform Brian Winslow at 603-524-8444 or you may register online by clicking here before September 21st.

Professor Dorsey will help us look back on the last 100 years with her presentation titled, “Major Events in Medicine and their Relationship with Community Healthcare.”  Molly Girard Dorsey is an associate professor of History and core faculty member in Justice Studies at the University of New Hampshire.  She teaches classes on the history of medicine, legal history, and war & society.  She has published a book on chemical warfare in World War I and is working on a project on the integration of civilian professionals, including nurses and doctors, into the modern American military.

The event is sponsored by:

Hospice, Homecare, Physical Therapy, Laconia, Meredith, Center Harbor, Moultonborough Therapy, VNA, Hospice, Healthcare, Laconia, Wolfeboro, Wakfield

Things You Should Know About Lyme Disease and Other Tick-borne Diseases

New Hampshire (NH) continues to have one of the highest rates of Lyme disease in the nation, and about 60% of deer ticks sampled in NH are infected with Borrelia burgdorferi, the bacteria that causes Lyme disease (2014, Medscape).

Lakes Region, Visint Nurses, VNA, Central New Hampshire Hospice, Pediatrics

Credit Sara Plourde / NHPR

Additional preventative measures can include:


  • Avoid tick-infested areas when possible and stay on the path when hiking to avoid brush.
  • Wear light-colored clothing that covers arms and legs so ticks can be more easily seen.
  • Tuck pants into socks before going into wooded or grassy areas.
  • Apply insect repellent (20-30% DEET) to exposed skin. Other repellent options may be found here: Outdoor workers in NH are at particular risk of tickborne diseases and they should be reminded about methods of prevention.
  • Do daily tick checks to look for ticks on the body, especially warm places like behind the knees, the groin, and the back and neck.
  • Pets returning inside may also bring ticks with them. Performing tick checks and using tick preventatives on pets will minimize this occurrence.
  • Shower soon after returning indoors to wash off any unattached ticks and check clothes for any ticks that might have been carried inside. Placing clothes in the dryer on high heat for an hour effectively kills ticks. A recent study suggests that if clothing is not wet, shorter drying times (minimum of 6 minutes) may effectively kill ticks.
  • Remove ticks promptly using tweezers. Tick removal within 36 hours of attachment can prevent disease.
  • Monitor for signs and symptoms of tickborne diseases for 30 days after a tick bite. Patients should contact their healthcare provider if symptoms develop.


The Winnipesaukee Playhouse partners with Central New Hampshire VNA & Hospice to produce a serious comedy.

The Winnipesaukee Playhouse Professional Company Presents: Grace and Glorie by Tom Ziegler March 17th – 20th in Meredith, NH.

Grace and Glorie

A comedy about two women from very different walks of life brought together by the circumstances life throws at us all. When Grace, a feisty 90 year-old cancer patient in the backwaters of Virginia, checks herself out of the hospital, the last person she expects to spend her days with is Glorie, her volunteer hospice worker who is a Harvard MBA recently transplanted from New York.  As she attempts to care for and comfort the cantankerous Grace, the sophisticated Glorie gains new perspectives on values and insight into life’s highs and lows.  Grace and Glorie is the best kind of play: one that will have you laughing through your tears.  Starring Barbara Webb and Molly Parker Myers.

Meredith, NH

Barbara Webb

Meredith NH

Molly Parker Myers










Central New Hampshire VNA & Hospice encourages all to attend, “This is a heart-warming story about real-life people with real-life flaws, there truly is a lot to learn from Grace and Glorie,” states Brian Winslow, Director of Development at Central New Hampshire VNA & Hospice. “In addition to getting the word out about this play, we are providing technical expertise to the Winnipesaukee Playhouse and will be attending Talkback sessions after the performance for people who are interested in the play subject matter.”

For more information you can check out the Winnipesaukee Playhouse website or you can purchase your tickets here.

Grief as a Medicine

James Miller PhD Bereavement Coordinator

James Miller PhD
Bereavement Coordinator
Central New Hampshire VNA & Hospice

While grief is a feeling with which most of us are familiar, it can manifest itself in many different ways. Some of us tend to equate grief with sadness but others experience much more than sadness as a result of grief. Many persons report feelings of anger, guilt, resentment, loneliness, fear, anxiety, panic, relief, etc. as a component of grief. However grief is experienced, there seems to be a commonly-held belief among bereavement counselors that what is most important is to recognize, express and eventually accept the various components of grief. Indeed, “grief is itself a medicine (William Cowper) that needs to be experienced in order to release its healing qualities.
Unlike many unpleasant feelings with which we struggle, grief is better embraced than escaped. “The difference between grief and joy is what we do with them. Grief we push away. Joy we try to hold on to. When we refuse our grief, it stays. When we try to control our joy, it leaves. That’s the way these processes are” (Anne Wilson Schaef). Thus, we are encouraged not to refuse our grief but rather to embrace it with all its challenges and complexities.
In addition to being painful, grief also may be complicated and contain feelings which we believe “we should not have.” Our culture may convey the message that we should not be angry at someone who just died or we should not feel relieved that we no longer have to care for someone. There can be many “unresolved” issues with the person who died or in some way left our life. As with the painful feelings associated with grief, we also must be willing to acknowledge the “unresolved” aspects of grief and attempt to reach acceptance even without total resolution.
Another aspect of grief that sometimes can be overlooked is what we might call the “cumulative” impact of loss. People frequently report that after a loss they re-experience previous losses and thus feel more grief than they might anticipate due to this cumulative impact. This is especially true when prior losses have not be adequately grieved and/or the individual has not yet reached a place of peace/acceptance with prior losses.

Finally, we must realize that grief can and often does challenge our sense of who were are or how we create meaning. If we identify with a person or with our role in that person’s life–wife, husband, child, parent, friend, etc., then our identity and/or sense of purpose is challenged when that person dies or leaves our life. Grief can exist not only as a result of death, but also as result of losing someone or something that has been important to us, such as through divorce or loss of employment, health, independence, etc. It seems significant to associate grief not only with death but also with loss in general in order to fully understand its impact.
For a variety of reasons many of us would rather avoid than embrace grief. However, as stated earlier, grief can be its own medicine that must be expressed in order for it to heal. However expressed, be it through talking, writing, creating, exercising, crying, etc., it is important to somehow express our grief in order to release its healing power.

About the Author:

James Miller is the Bereavement Coordinator for Central New Hampshire VNA & Hospice.  Working directly with clients and their families James also hosts a number of community support groups. Upcoming events include a 90 minute information & support meeting regarding grief during the holidays at the following locations and times:

  • November 18th from 5:30 – 7:00 PM and December 16th from 11:30 AM – 1:00 PM in the Library Room at All Saints Episcopal Church, 258 S. Main Street in Wolfeboro, NH.
  • December 9th from 6:00 – 7:30 PM in the Conference Room, Central NH VNA & Hospice, 780 N. Main Street in Laconia, NH.

The purpose of the meeting is to help individuals who have lost a loved one find ways to cope with their grief during the holidays.

Central New Hampshire VNA & Hospice Announces Jennifer Laramie as New Hospice Director

Lakes Region, Hospice, VNA, Visiting Nurses

Jennifer Laramie RN, CHPN
Hospice Director
Central New Hampshire VNA & Hospice

Jennifer Laramie, RN, CHPN has been chosen as the new Program Director for the Hospice and Palliative Care programs at Central New Hampshire VNA & Hospice.

Laramie will lead the Hospice team: registered nurses; Dr. Carolyn Crosby, Medical Director; John Davies, Spiritual Care Coordinator; licensed nursing assistants; a social worker; bereavement coordinator; volunteers; and other health care professionals such as physical or occupational therapists, nutritionists, and a pharmacist. Laramie says, “The hospice team here is a dedicated group of caring and compassionate professionals providing high quality care in our community. I am honored to be a part of something I believe so wholeheartedly in.”

Central New Hampshire VNA & Hospice is not a new agency for Jennifer, since 2005 Laramie has been a leading clinician within the hospice program. Before that she worked as a Telemetry RN at LRGHealthcare. Laramie graduated from the New Hampshire Technical Institute RN program in 1996 Phi Kappa Theta and currently holds her certification as a Hospice & Palliative Nurse. She was born and raised in Chocorua, New Hampshire, has 2 children and stays very busy as a Girl Scout Leader and Coaching Youth Soccer League.

“We are proud to announce Jenn Laramie as the new Hospice Director of Central New Hampshire VNA & Hospice.” States CEO Margaret Franckhauser, “Jenn is richly experienced in both palliative care and hospice. She combines a nurse’s skill and compassion with a deep knowledge of the community and a strong command of the field. She was born and raised in Carroll County, so she is working in a place where she has deep roots. We look to Jenn to guide the program in making a difference in the lives of individuals and families.”

Hospice is a unique program which strives to provide the best, most compassionate care possible for individuals with life-limiting illnesses and to support families in times of enormous stress. Laramie says, “It is an honor and a privilege that a hospice patient and family allows us to be a part of their care at this intimate time in their life!”