According to recent census data, more than 113,000 military veterans reside in Manatee, Sarasota, Charlotte and DeSoto counties. They served our country proudly in times of war and peace, at home and abroad.
Tidewell Hospice has had the honor of providing services for thousands of veterans since 1980, and now enhances that care with Tidewell Honors - a comprehensive program focused on respectfully celebrating veterans and providing care that recognizes the unique challenges that may exist in military families.
By specifically honoring the veteran's contribution to America's freedom, Tidewell Honors says "thank you" for a job well done and a life well lived. The program gives veterans and their families the opportunity to choose from among a number of services tailored just for them.
In addition to their renowned expertise in caring for those with advanced illnesses, Tidewell's staff has undergone specific training that helps them identify and deal with issues that are unique to those who have provided military service.
For some veterans, the psychological effects of combat can remain dormant for years, only to re-emerge when they are facing their own mortality. Others may suffer from post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) or traumatic brain injury (TBI).
Treatment in each of these cases requires special sensitivity, and Tidewell's clinical team of physicians, nurses and social workers are prepared to identify these needs and recommend specific courses of action.
Tidewell Honors offers special recognition to veterans, upon request, in the form of a unique pinning ceremony.
The event can be as large or small, formal or informal as you'd like. Some veterans and their families may decide to hold a gathering of loved ones and friends to share in the ceremony, while others may prefer a more private experience. It is your choice.
Veterans receive a special certificate of appreciation and a unique Tidewell Honors pin, which will be presented by a fellow former serviceman or woman who has been specially trained as a Tidewell Veteran Volunteer.
The ceremony is an exciting way to recognize veterans for their service and sacrifice.
Leaving a Legacy
Patients who are living with advanced or chronic illness often find it important to leave behind a legacy that can be shared with future generations, and this is an integral part of Tidewell Honors.
Using the Library of Congress' Veterans History Project as a guide, Tidewell staff and volunteers encourage veterans to create a legacy to tell their stories. This project often helps with the task of finding meaning in one's life, creating memories of joyful experience and often aids in resolution of long standing conflicts, both internal and external.
Although clearly in a life review military experience is just one piece of the story, for many it is a very important piece.
Tidewell Honors provides care not only for veterans, but also for their families. Three specific support groups have been designed by our grief specialists that allow loved ones and caregivers to share their experiences in a safe environment, and to connect with others who are dealing with similar circumstances.
Following the death of a veteran, there are several other aspects of grief support offered. A Journey of Remembrance service will be conducted that can include the playing of Taps and the distribution of special Angel pins in recognition of the caring that loved ones have provided for their veteran. A condolence card honors the service of the veteran and the loving care of the veteran's family.
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