NARFE - Chapter 1594
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December 2018 Christmas Luncheon and January 2019 Regular Meeting

At the January 2019 Chapter 1594 meeting, our members were presented information on Hospice care from our speakers, Ms. Allison Tucker, Vitas Representative with Vitas Healthcare, and Arnita Staten, Volunteer Manager with Vitas Healthcare.  Ms. Tucker spoke first on Hospice care, which started in Florida in 1978, as a volunteer organization.  Vitas Healthcare was at the forefront of this service.  In 1982, Vitas Healthcare helped write the Medicare Hospice regulations.  She presented information on palliative care and hospice care.  She discussed how the misconceptions about Hospice care have delayed getting this service for their family members who are very ill.  One of the biggest misconceptions is that it means, “do-nothing” for the ill person or it is only for cancer patients.  Under this care, the patient is in charge.  Their care is provided in their homes.   The patient and family members are provided education, emotional and spiritual support, medical supplies and equipment, etc.  Medicare benefits offer four levels of hospice care, 100% coverage of costs, and unlimited benefit periods.

Next, Ms. Arnita Staten spoke of the need for volunteers. Hospice care must be composed of 5% volunteer members.  Some of the tasks that the volunteers provide are listening to the patients share their memories, provide time off for family caregivers, running simple household errands, visiting those patients who are in nursing homes, and other activities as needed by the patient and their families.  Contact Vitas Healthcare to volunteer.

Letters of Appreciation were presented to our speakers.

The members were reminded of the various conferences coming-up.  In February 15, 2019, is the District 12 conference in New Braunfels, Texas, the FEDcon19 conference scheduled for March 10-13, 2019, in Alexandria, Virginia, and the Texas Federation Event, scheduled for April 24-26, 2019, in Longview, Texas.  Information is available in the TFR, Texas Federation Register.

Our Chapter 1594 will continue to pay the $40.00 membership fee for new active and retired federal employees joining our Chapter.

Chapter business per the agenda was completed as scheduled.

Our next meeting is scheduled for February 20, 2019. It will be held at Brookhill Baptist Church, 631 Utopia Ave., San Antonio, Texas. There will be an OPM (Office of Personnel Management) Services on-line and webpage demonstration.

For information contact Gerry Rendon, 210-213-4169.

Christine Cuellar, Secretary for Chapter 1594.