Two MRCC residents trained as hospice volunteers

Margaretville — Two residents at Mountainside Residential Care Center were recently certified as Hospice volunteers.

Esther Ronning and John Auran received their official certification in mid-March. They completed their training with a Catskill Area Hospice volunteer who traveled to Mountainside for the instruction.

Director Kathy Roberts said that an average of 8-10 residents are under Hospice care. As certified volunteers, Esther and John can provide a variety of comfort services for their fellow residents.
“They can visit these residents, write letters, read to them or just hold their hand,” Mrs. Roberts explained.

Several visits per week
She said that Esther and John will probably visit Hospice residents an average of two times each week.

“They can make these visits when they want to or when they receive requests,” Mrs. Roberts added.
Mrs. Roberts noted that Mountainside officials are pleased to offer residents the opportunity to become involved in the Hospice program.

“It really gave them both great pride to take this course,” Mrs. Roberts commented.
Both of the participants said they are looking forward to providing comfort to others at Mountainside.

“It’s nice to be able to help our fellow residents,” Esther remarked.
John concurred.

“Taking part in the Hospice program is rewarding for us to assist others,” he stated.
Administrator Philip Mehl said this type of innovation is one of the elements that have helped earn Mountainside a reputation as a special facility.

Making a difference
“I believe that resident participation in such a program is pretty unique. The residents’ desire to be a meaningful force in the lives of their friends and neighbors, as well as Mountainside’s ability to facilitate this training with Catskill Area Hospice, reinforces our philosophy that life is to be celebrated and we all have the ability to make a difference at any age.”

Mrs. Roberts indicated that several other residents are considering become Hospice volunteers.
For additional information about Mountainside, which is a member of HealthAlliance of the Hudson Valley®, please call 845 586-1800.

About HealthAlliance
HealthAlliance of the Hudson Valley® is the alignment of Benedictine Hospital, Kingston Hospital, Margaretville Hospital, Mountainside Residential Care Center and Woodland Pond at New Paltz. As the parent organization, HealthAlliance provides a unified governance structure, while still allowing each hospital to continue as a separate and distinct corporation.
The goal of HealthAlliance is to strengthen the quality of care and bring forward enhanced technology to serve the present and future healthcare needs in the Hudson Valley.
HealthAlliance and its affiliate facilities are committed to providing compassionate, patient-centered care and ensuring patient safety, privacy and dignity to all. For further information about HealthAlliance visit our website at