NHPCO and NHF Salute 2011 Circle of Life Award® Winners

For Immediate Release:
July 19, 2011

Award Recognizes Innovative Providers of End-of-Life Care

(Alexandria, Va) – National Hospice and Palliative Care Organization and the National Hospice Foundation honor the recipients of the 2011 Circle of Life Award®.  Presented on July 18 at the American Hospital Association’s annual summit held in San Diego, the award celebrates innovation in end-of-life care and highlights programs that demonstrate superior vision, depth, and scope.  The 2011 Circle of Life Award winners are:

  • The Center for Hospice & Palliative Care, Cheektowaga, New York
  • Gilchrist Hospice Care, Hunt Valley, Maryland
  • St. John Providence Health System, Detroit, Michigan

In announcing the honored recipients, AHA emphasized that these programs share overriding themes of compassion, dedication and collaboration. Gilchrist Hospice Care has successfully integrated palliative care across hospital, hospice services, physician groups, patient homes and long-term care and assisted living facilities.  St. John Providence Health System has hardwired palliative care into every service and educated staff, so that no matter where an individual enters the system they are evaluated for palliative care needs. The Center for Hospice & Palliative Care provides a very-extensive care continuum and a sophisticated palliative care institute, with strong emphasis on collaboration, physician leadership and clinical research.
In addition to the three award winners, AHA presented Citations of Honor to other exemplary care providers:

  • Dartmouth-Hitchcock Medical Center Palliative Care Service, Lebanon, New Hampshire
  • John H. Stroger, Jr. Hospital of Cook County Palliative Care Program, Chicago, Illinois
  • St. Mary's Health Care System, Athens, Georgia

University of Pittsburgh Medical Center Supportive and Palliative Care Program, Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania
“These programs serve as models for us all as we move forward in our shared goal of providing the highest quality of care for all those we serve,” said J. Donald Schumacher, NHPCO and NHF president and CEO. “The importance of quality end-of-life care is at the heart of our organization’s strategic plan and we are proud to celebrate those care providers that are leading the way in innovation and quality care delivery.”

“NHPCO and NHF are particularly proud that all three 2011 Circle of Life Award winners and three of the four citation of honor recipients are all NHPCO members,” Schumacher added.

The 2011 awards are supported, in part, by the California HealthCare Foundation, based in Oakland, and by the Archstone Foundation.  Major sponsors of the 2011 awards are the National Hospice and Palliative Care Organization and the National Hospice Foundation, as well as the American Hospital Association, the Catholic Health Association, and the National Consensus Project for Quality Palliative Care; the American Academy of Hospice and Palliative Medicine and the National Association of Social Workers are Circle of Life cosponsors.

Since 2000, the Circle of Life Award has honored programs that demonstrate excellence and innovation in palliative and end-of-life care. Further information about the honorees and the Circle of Life Award is available at the AHA website.


Media Contacts
Jon Radulovic
Ph: 703-837-3139

Jennifer Armstrong Gay
Ph: 202-626-2342

Note: Look for additional information about this year’s Circle of Life Award recipients in NHPCO’s NewsLine later in the year.

Read the American Hospital Association press release on the AHA website.