Living our ‘caring’ core value: Decedent Affairs offers end-of-life resources through new internal website

November 18, 2020  //  FOUND IN: Updates & Resources

The comfort provided at the end of life and afterward can be the most touching and memorable moments for patients and their families. It can be equally as emotional for those who support and provide that care.

The Office of Decedent Affairs (ODA) provides education, training and support for Michigan Medicine’s dedicated faculty, staff and learners regarding all matters related to the death of a family member or friend. 

To make those resources even more accessible, the ODA team launched a new internal website providing a centralized location to find answers to questions regarding the care of patients and families before, during and after a death.

“We recognize that caring for patients and families at the end of life or after a death can be emotionally charged for our staff and faculty,” said Program Manager Aimee Vantine, LMSW, who developed the site, along with Program Manager Lisbeth Harcourt, LMSW, social work graduate student intern Selena Kas-Mikha and administrative assistant Sara Castillo.

“We strive to help Michigan Medicine be a center of excellence in providing end-of-life and after death care for patients and families and we have designed this website with the goal of supporting staff with the information they need to increase clinician’s confidence in providing high quality and compassionate care,” she added.

Specifically, the website enables easier access to: 

  • After COVID-19 death resources
  • Bereavement education materials
  • Policy and procedural tip sheets for adult patients, medical examiner cases, Mott patients, and Von Voigtlander patients
  • Tools and resources for family and friends to aid in their grieving process
  • An online form to request a variety of training and education sessions intended to support care providers of all disciplines
  • The Honoring Life and Loss: Grief Awareness for Faculty and Staff events and the ability to host a Grief Awareness event or activity in your work area
  • Information on interdisciplinary committees across Michigan Medicine that focus on opportunities to improve end of life and after death care
  • The Always Remembered: A Bereavement Giving Library for Mott
  • Past and future grief awareness events for staff
  • An opportunity to participate in a virtual Grief and Healing Wall.

ODA also developed information for patients and families which can be found on the individual home pages of UH/CVC, Mott and Von Voigtlander hospitals, which address topics such as:

  • Grief support following a death
  • Financial and legal concerns
  • Remembering your loved one
  • Living with grief
  • Resources and support  

Please bookmark the website which will be updated regularly. 

For more information, contact SocWk-ODA@med.umich.edu

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