VITAS Innovative Hospice Care was founded in Miami in 1978 as one of the nation's first hospice programs. The name, VITAS, is derived from the Latin word for lives. It symbolizes the VITAS mission: to preserve the quality of life for those who have a limited time to live. Today, VITAS has grown to become the largest provider of hospice care nationwide, with 43 locations in 15 states plus Washington, D.C. We currently care for a diverse population of 11,500 patients per day and their families, utilizing 8700 full and part-time employees nationally.
VITAS celebrates the lives and accomplishments of every one of our patients regardless of age, race, gender, religion, political affiliation, sexual orientation, income, or ability to pay. Similarly, VITAS embraces people from different nationalities, ethnic backgrounds, and lifestyles as employees in the company. We believe it's important for the patients and families we serve to receive hospice care from individuals that understand their culture, the types of foods they like, their beliefs about death and dying, and the dynamics of family relationships. We believe that when we can match our patient and family's values and cultures with those of our caregivers, it's a much more meaningful experience for all. Hospice care is provided by interdisciplinary teams that are comprised of RNs, LPNs, social workers, chaplains, home health aides, and physicians, as well as music therapists, pet therapists, dieticians and volunteers.
Staff meetings/team meetings include diverse topics and education in order to best approach the needs of patients and families. VITAS has been the innovator in leading the way and tending to the needs of a variety of cultures and backgrounds. VITAS employs Community Liaisons whose primary responsibility is to serve as hospice advocates and hospice educators within traditionally underserved communities. VITAS Community Liaisons work within the African-American, Hispanic, Asian-Pacific and Jewish communities. We are accredited by the National Institute for Jewish Hospice, have a formal relationship with the Full Baptist Gospel Convention, collaborate with the Duke Institute on Care at the End of Life to improve hospice care in the African American Community, have a formal partnership with the National Black Nurses Association, serve the needs of Hispanic patients through our bi-lingual interdisciplinary hospice teams, La Esperanza Eterna, and much more.