Rawlings hitting the ground running as new CEO of HospiceCare

CHARLESTON, W.Va. — There’s a new Chief Executive Officer for HospiceCare Charleston and he is ready to continue on the mission of serving others.

Chris Rawlings was named as CEO recently to replace retired Larry Robertson. HospiceCare Charleston serves several counties in Southern West Virginia including Boone, Braxton, Clay, Fayette, Greenbrier, Jackson, Kanawha, Lincoln, Mason, Monroe, Nicholas, Pocahontas, Putnam, Roane, Summers, and Webster.

Rawlings said on a recent episode of MetroNews ‘Talkline’ that he is ready to continue the mission of affirming the end of life care.

Chris Rawlings

“The organization recognizes the quality of life, peace and comfort, dying with dignity, and provides family and spiritual support for all of those surrounding the loved one at the end of life,” Rawlings said.

The organization is celebrating its 40th anniversary this year and will be opening a 12-bed inpatient unit this spring at CAMC’s Memorial campus to complement its 24-bed Hubbard Hospice House in Charleston, its 12-bed Hubbard House House West unit at Thomas Memorial Hospital in S. Charleston, and 8-bed Peyton Hospice House in Lewisburg.

Rawlings said the non-profit organization seems to be in good standing even when the employee healthcare market tends to struggle.

“From an inpatient bed standpoint, I think we are pretty good off,” he said. “From a staffing standpoint, just like the rest of the healthcare market in West Virginia, we are always trying to find certified nursing assistants, nurse practitioners, physicians.”

HospiceCare also has around 300 volunteers, according to Rawlings, in hospice, palliative care, grief & loss counseling, and kids path programs.

Rawlings touted their palliative care program, which is supportive care for people not considering hospice care. He said they have nurse practitioners and social worker-led teams to help a person during a time of long illness.

“Those individuals with chronic conditions like congestive heart failure or COPD (Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease), dementia, those individuals can gain services and a better quality of life as that disease state is progressing through the palliative care program,” Rawlings said.

HospiceCare is completely non-profit and Rawlings assured it will remain that way. He noted that all payers will be accepted including Medicare and Medicaid.

“At the end of the day at hospice care, different than some of the for-profit hospices around the state, at our facility, there is no cost. If you are unable to pay we provide those services at no cost,” he said.

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