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Inside the VA Hospice Suites

White River Junction — In the two hospice suites available for veterans at the VA center in White River Junction, the comfort of the patient and his caregivers is of prime consideration.

Set up more like studio apartments than standard hospital rooms, the hospice suites accommodate the patient with a bed, but also provide a small home away from home for family members or hospice volunteers.

Caregivers can expect to find a fully functional kitchenette, with a refrigerator, microwave oven, coffee pot and cupboards that volunteers keep stocked with coffee, tea and individually packaged foods, like cereal and crackers and granola bars. They will also find a table with chairs to sit at and a separate living area with a fold-out sofa, recliner, television and shelves offering books and puzzles with which to pass the time. Next to the patient’s bed, there is another recliner and an old-fashioned rocking chair.

It’s not exactly home, but the small touches go a long way to create a coziness that may be absent from most hospital settings.

— Diane Taylor

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