Programs & Training

Comfort Homesake is a multi-generational, multi-ethnic, multi-faith non profit association of professionals, each with a unique approach to the discipline of community based health care service delivery.  Comfort Homesake's palliative approach is culturally relevant and a proven success.  

Since 2012 our training programs help staff and caregivers to replace expectations with plans; prepare for difficult possibilities; focus on what can be controlled; become a feeling observer.  Empathy Training clarifies the role of sympathy vs empathy in the workplace. Conversation facilitation training is designed to help discover ways to initiate and facilitate meaningful communication and decision making about values and treatment wishes. Documentation workshops allow participants to explore their options, discuss wishes and get more information or if ready complete and sign advance health care directives, POLST or letter to your doctor.

Palliative services are provided by Comfort Homesake's team of volunteers. Mind, body and emotional support is delivered to homeless, unbefriended and individuals struggling with substance abuse issues on a case by case basis.  Our annual San Quentin Health Fair participation since 2014 has increased the number of advance directives completed among inmates and reported to San Quentin medical staff for inclusion into inmate medical records from  18 in 2014, to 23 in 2015, and 32 in 2016. Comfort Homesake is recently awarded a contract under AB109 to provide community based palliative services to recently released inmates managing a chronic disease, with a serious illness or facing end of life. 

Direct patient care is achieved through Comfort Homesake's No One Dies Alone (NODA) program.  Launched in 2016, NODA has three components.  1) Friendly Visits allow the lonely and sick to feel they are not alone.  These visits last one to two hours and may include reading, talking, singing, and for the most part listening. 2) Meaning and Legacy is a component that works with patients to find value and meaning of their lives followed by a creative process that allows patients and families to work together to create a legacy project. 3) Vigil is offered   to terminally ill patients  currently referred by Alameda Health Systems, Alameda County Social Services Agency /In-Home-Supportive Service  Care Partners program, and Bonita House. Comfort Homesake's NODA nurse coordinator can be reached at info@comforthomesake.com for referrals or volunteers.

Volunteer Opportunities :  Comfort Homesake maintains a schedule of volunteer trainings, NODA trainings, and train the trainer trainings.  In addition, Comfort Homesake is accepting resumes from skilled contractors in the areas of bi-lingual communication, social media,  training, coordination and sitting vigil.  We  welcome your inquires at info@comforthomesake.com.

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Why is Health Care Training Important?

The US Census predicts the number of Americans over 65 to double by 2030. We are living longer and for many longer life comes with financial uncertainty and increased troublesome symptom burdens.  Of the aged demographic, 38 percent are “disabled,” 27 percentlive in low-income households and 15 percent will be without a car.  Many will be seniors with acute or chronic conditions that will eventually require end-of-life care.

Differences in cultural attitude towards long-term and terminal illness mean Caucasians account for 40 percent of end-of life care clients. Of the remaining 60 percent, no single group represents as many users. Consequently, many untrained and uninformed family care-givers struggle to provide their loved ones with the desired quality of care.

Today, poorly-integrated medical services and inefficiencies restrict access for low-income individuals who turn, instead, to expensive public systems, impacting the economy by $1.3 trillion annually. Public dollars frequently pay for transportation for such individuals who rely upon fire departments and emergency medical vehicles to reach expensive hospital emergency rooms and obtain only temporary relief.

The retirement of the entire Baby Boomer generation, or the “Senior Tsunami,” will burden infrastructures, including emergency and hospital services, transportation (i.e. paratransit) and Medicare and is creating a national debate.

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NOW is the time to plan

Prepare loved ones with a serious illness to make decisions about their healthcare treatment wishes through discussion, planning and documentation.

Learn self care and provide tools for coping with serious illness to include culturally sensitive conversation honoring tradition.

Provide options for the seriously ill that connect the dots between health care experiences and health care wishes.

Experience the comfort of knowing what to expect from advanced illness.

Remember - YOU ARE NOT ALONE WE CAN DO THIS TOGETHER!

Empathy

The Comfort Homesake Empathy Program is guided by the Stanford University School of Medicine publication, Ethno Geriatrics. Comfort Homesake has incorporated and built on this groundbreaking research for purposes of providing an instruction guide for groups, individuals, and organizations to understand and adopt more empathetic attitudes, listening skills, and positive attitudes toward the elderly and terminally ill.

Comfort Homesake provides Empathy Training to individuals and groups. Please see our calendar for a schedule of upcoming training opportunities or contact us to schedule a training for your group.
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POLST

Comfort Homesake is a certified trainer for Physicians Order for Life Sustaining Treatment (POLST). POLST is a form printed on bright pink paper, and signed by both a doctor and patient, that states what kind of medical treatment individuals want to have in a medical emergency.

POLST helps give seriously ill patients more control over their care in the case that they are unable to speak for themselves when medical personnel arrive.

If you or your group is interested in receiving the POLST form along with training on what it means and how to fill it out, contact Comfort Homesake.