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It is hard to believe, but 2016 will mark the 30th anniversary of the Hospice and Palliative Nurses Association (HPNA). Founded in California in 1986 as the Hospice Nurses Association, we have grown continually since then. It took a few years until 1990 to reach 1000 members, but we passed the 5000-member mark in 2004 and the 10 000-member mark in 2010. The 11 500 current members enjoy the benefits that our organization offers, from e-learning and networking opportunities to discounts toward education and certification.


We will be celebrating this milestone throughout the upcoming year, and planning is currently underway for a number of events tied in to this anniversary. We will share all the information of our anniversary here in the Journal of Hospice and Palliative Nursing, but you can also keep updated through our Web site at



We are only a few months away from this year's Annual Assembly of the American Academy of Hospice and Palliative Medicine (AAHPM) and HPNA in beautiful Chicago, Illinois, on March 9 to 12, 2016.


The Annual Assembly is designed for nurses, physicians, and other health care providers interested in acquiring, maintaining, or expanding the skills needed to function effectively in the field of hospice and palliative care. As leaders in promoting excellence and advancing expert care in serious illness, HPNA and AAHPM combine their expertise to advance the field, thus meeting the shared goal of improving the quality of life for patients and families facing serious or life-threatening conditions. This annual 4-day event brings together nearly 3000 of your colleagues and peers to share research, clinical best practices, and practice-related guidance to advance the specialty and improve patient care.


Registration is now open for the event! Visit the Annual Assembly Web page for more information at



Several position statements published by the HPNA have been updated throughout 2015 and are now available for viewing online or download for use in your practice. These include but are not limited to the following:


* Complementary Therapies in Palliative Nursing Practice


* Spiritual Care


* Value of the Advanced Practice Registered Nurse in Palliative Care


* Value of the Licensed Practical/Vocational Nurse in Palliative Care


* Value of the Nursing Assistant in Palliative Care


* Value of the Professional Nurse in Palliative Care



You can view all of our position statements online at More position statements will be updated throughout 2016, and we will continue to keep you informed of these changes.



In 2013, the HPNA conducted an ethics survey of its members, and participants were asked to identify ethical issues, resources, and barriers experienced by hospice and palliative nurses in their practice settings. Participants were also asked how HPNA could be of support to effectively manage ethical dilemmas.


Educational opportunities were one of the participants' suggestions, which led to this series of interactive case studies available for purchase. This series will help those using it to brush up on their ethics stills.


The Palliative Care Ethics Case Studies is a 6-module e-learning course that allows nurses and other health care providers to work through 5 ethical dilemmas. The first module is a review of ethical theories and concepts to prepare learners for the case studies. After being introduced to the patient and situation, the learner progresses through each case by selecting what the nurse in the case would say or do at critical points, which lead the learner to the next phase of the case. Each choice may take the case down a different path.


With Barbara Daly, PhD, RN, FAAN, as the content expert, the 5 case studies were written by leaders in nursing ethics representing infants to older adults in multiple settings. Each author took his/her own unique approach to writing his/her case study, resulting in 5 different approaches to ethical dilemmas. Contact hours can be earned by working through each of the 6 modules, answering the questions, reading the required articles, and completing the evaluation.


We recommend completing the Review of Ethical Concepts first. The other modules can be completed in any order. Brief synopses of each of the 5 case studies are as follows:


Palliative Care in the Emergency Department-A 26-year-old woman with late-stage advanced invasive cervical cancer, which has metastasized throughout her abdomen, is seen in the emergency room. She is refusing treatment, requesting a hastened death.


Now I Lay Me Down to Sleep: Ethics & Palliative Sedation in the Home-A 42-year-old woman has metastatic (spine, pelvis, and lungs) breast cancer. The pain and shortness of breath are incapacitating. The patient is requesting palliative sedation in the home.


When Hello Means Goodbye: An Exploration Into Perinatal Palliative Care-A woman at 24 weeks of pregnancy whose baby has been diagnosed with anencephaly wishes to carry her baby to term. The obstetrician disagrees with the mother's request for a cesarean section delivery, which she feels may help her baby survive better than a natural birth.


PEG Feedings: When Benefit Turns to Burden-A 92-year-old woman with end-stage dementia living with her daughter in a socioeconomically disadvantaged area has been receiving enteral feedings for over a year. She is now on hospice and has pulmonary edema. There is a disagreement about continuing the enteral feedings between the hospice team and the patient's primary physician, putting the daughter in the middle.


A Pediatric Case-A 23-month old girl drowned, was resuscitated, and after being on a ventilator for 12 days is now breathing on her own but remains unconscious. Her parents disagree with staff on the care she has received and options for continuing care.


HPNA members can access the modules by logging into the member's portal. Non-HPNA members can access the modules at Each module is $30 for HPNA members or $50 for non-HPNA members.



The Ninth Annual Clinical Practice Forum, held last month at the Station Square Hotel in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, was one of the most successful so far. Hundreds of participants from across the country attended this yearly education and networking event, designed for practicing hospice and palliative nurses and other health care professionals in the specialty.


We would like to thank everyone who was involved in the event, including the participants, presenters, and those involved in its planning and execution. We would also like to thank our 3 preconference speakers as well as our keynote speaker, Diana J. Mason, PhD, RN, FAAN.


As a reminder, next year's Clinical Practice Forum is already scheduled for the month of September. More information including dates, sponsorship and exhibitor information, and presentation opportunities will become available in the next few months at



Congratulations go out to Debra L. Wiegand, PhD, RN, CCRN, CHPN, FAHA, FPCN, FAAN, who was elected to the HPNA Board of Directors for a first term, beginning in January 2016. Dr Wiegand's 15-year program of research has focused on improving end-of-life care for families of patients dying in the acute setting. Her research has been funded by grants from National Institutes of Health, Hospice and Palliative Nurses Foundation, and Sigma Theta Tau. She has presented at the Annual Assembly and has been published in this journal and others. She has served as the co-chairperson of the AAHPM and Annual Assembly Scientific Program Committee, as a member of the Research Advisory Council, and is currently a co-chairperson of the HPNA Bioethics Special Interest Group. In 2014, she received the designation of a Fellow of Palliative Care Nursing. We congratulate Dr Wiegand on her election to the HPNA Board of Directors.



The HPNA Board Development and Leadership Committee is seeking nominations (including self-nominations) for individuals to serve on the Board of Directors for a 3-year term to begin January 2017. In order to complement the competencies represented by the current board, the Board Development and Leadership Committee is seeking individuals with competency in Community Health, Regulatory, and Research Demonstrated in Practice. Full application details are available on the HPNA Web site. The application deadline is Monday, February 1, 2016.



We are asking HPNA members to share their stories, experiences, and passion for the specialty of palliative nursing. As a member of HPNA, you are welcome to share how you positively impacted the lives of your patients, their families, and your community. It is the experiences we share that are truly the essence of our specialty.


The care you provide is very intense and personal-it makes a profound impact on those you serve. However, the demands can be extremely high, so we want you to share the rewards of your experiences with your colleagues, so we can all see the true impact "we" all make together and celebrate our unique contributions.


If you would like to share a story about your work, please e-mail the Director of Membership, Chad Reilly, at mailto:[email protected]. Even a few sentences can have a lasting impact on the professional lives of your colleagues. We look forward to receiving and sharing your stories very soon!



Hospice and Palliative Credentialing Center (HPCC) announces that the 2016 computer-based testing schedule is the same as 2015. The four 2016 testing windows are March, June, September, and December. The testing schedule with application deadlines and instructions are posted in each candidate handbook, which is available on our Web site,, under "certification."



All HPCC certifications are valid for a 4-year period. If you are due to renew your certification, visit the HPCC Web site Choose your credential and then "recertification" to learn about your renewal requirements and options for renewal. If you choose or are required to submit Hospice and Palliative Accrual for Renewal (HPAR) for recertification, please remember that December 31 is the final deadline for renewal this year. Please note that in 2016 all Advanced Certified Hospice and Palliative Nurse, Certified Hospice and Palliative Nurse, and Certified Hospice and Palliative Pediatric Nurse recertifications will be through HPAR as testing will no longer be an option for these credentials.



Self-assessment Exams (SAEs) are learning tools available as Web tests on the Internet. They serve as practice tools to evaluate the strengths and weaknesses of a candidate who is interested in the certification and recertification process in hospice and palliative care nursing. Six SAEs are available at


Hospice and Palliative Advanced Practice Registered Nurse SAE (APRN SAE)


Hospice and Palliative Registered Nurse SAE (RN SAE)


Hospice and Palliative Pediatric Registered Nurse SAE (Pediatric Nurse SAE)


Hospice and Palliative Licensed Practical/Vocational Nurse SAE (LP/VN SAE)


Hospice and Palliative Nursing Assistant SAE (NA SAE)


Hospice and Palliative Care Administrator SAE (ADM SAE)




The HPCC Employer Supporter Program recognizes those organizations that support certification. Certification is one way to validate the competence and knowledge of the nursing staff, and the Employer Supporter Program is a way to help focus greater attention on the importance of nursing in the delivery of hospice and palliative care services. Currently, there are more than 120 employers who have acknowledged that they support certification through HPCC.


Organizations in the Employer Supporter Program have their name and location posted on our Web site. Other benefits of the program include a wall certificate for display indicating participation in this program, receiving the bimonthly certification newsletter, and eligibility to receive the annual Employer of the Year Award. For more information on how to become part of the Employer Supporter Program, look under "certification" and "employers" on our Web site,



HPCC certification pins make great holiday gifts! Honor yourself or your certified nursing team members with a certification pin. The pins have been redesigned in 2015 and are available for purchase for all certificants! Wear your credential with pride! To order, please visit our Web site at under the "certification" tab,, or call the national office at 412-787-1057 for further information.



The Certified in Perinatal Loss Care (CPLC) is designed for professionals in a health care role who provide care to individuals experiencing perinatal loss. Candidates applying for the CPLC examination must meet the following requirements:


* Hold a professional degree as a registered nurse, physician, psychologist, counselor, child life specialist, social worker, or chaplain and appropriate current, unrestrictive license in the United States or its territories.


* Have evidence of work in their profession and the area of perinatal loss care and/or bereavement support for a minimum 2 years within the past 3 years.



To find out more about the CPLC, visit our Web site at under the "certification" tab.



During 2015, through the Advancing Expert Care campaign, the HPNF expanded its scholarship offerings. For example, 20 scholarships that provided both registration costs and a travel stipend were given to the Advanced Certified Hospice and Palliative Nurse (ACHPN) and Certified Hospice and Palliative Nurse (CHPN) Certification Review Courses held at the Ninth Annual Clinical Practice Forum in October. We doubled the number of scholarships to attend the just-held Clinical Practice Forum and have offered more than 80 scholarships for new and renewal HPCC certification! The remaining opportunities below for 2015 have an application deadline of December 1, 2015, so if you or someone you know may be interested, apply today. Don't miss out!


* 10 Conference Scholarships to the 2016 AAHPM/HPNA Annual Assembly in Chicago, Illinois, this March. Give yourself the gift of a nationally renowned and highly acclaimed professional conference being held in "The Windy City." During the 2016 AAHPM/HPNA Annual Assembly, the winner of the 2016 HPNF Project Death in America Nursing Leadership Award will be revealed!


* 17 Certification Scholarships. Did you earn your HPCC Certification or Recertification sometime between December 2014 and now? If so, you are eligible to apply for these competitive scholarships of fee reimbursement.


* Judy Lentz Scholarship for the Advancement of Palliative Care in Oncology Nursing. This opportunity was created in honor of the retired HPNA chief executive officer in recognition of her passion and lifelong dedication to oncology nursing and palliative care. In addition to a 1-year HPNA membership, this scholarship offers conference registration and travel expenses to the 2016 AAHPM/HPNA Annual Assembly in Chicago!



Visit the HPNF tab at under "leadership" and "awards recognition" for more information or to apply to these or any of our other scholarships, grants, and opportunities throughout the year.



HPNF is able to provide these continuing educational opportunities though your kind and generous donations. Please consider a gift to help us continue to advance expert care, through our annual appeal or another one of our campaigns. Pay tribute to your entire nursing team, a colleague, a family member, or a friend. Just provide the name(s) of your honoree at the time of your donation. Your gift from $50 to $500, or whatever you can, supports nurses in attending these highly acclaimed conferences, earning specialty certification, attaining accredited degrees, and seeking evidence-based research. Visit our Web site to learn more at Thank you for your support!


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