Palliative & Supportive Care of Nantucket, formerly Hospice Care of Nantucket, offers a broad range of physical, psychological, social and spiritual care for persons with life-threatening illness and their families. All services provided directly by their program’s staff are provided free of charge, thanks to the generosity of the Nantucket community and the dedicated work of Palliative & Supportive Care of Nantucket Foundation, which raises the funds to support this program.
Services are provided by Palliative & Supportive Care’s interdisciplinary team of professionals and volunteers and are aimed at providing education, support, and symptom control from the time of diagnosis through cure or, if cure is not possible, through advancing illness and end-of-life.
When cure of the disease is possible, the emphasis of care is on helping patients/families deal with the impact of serious illness, assisting them in understanding the disease and making decisions about treatment and care, relieving symptoms related to the illness or treatments, and coping with the emotional, social, and spiritual distress that may occur.
When cure seems unlikely, their goal is to help patients remain as comfortable as possible so that they may live their lives fully. The focus of care is on providing patients with expert control of pain and other symptoms, and on providing patient and family education and emotional, social, and spiritual support.
When an illness is terminal, care is focused on maintaining peacefulness and comfort, and on helping patients and families bring meaningful closure to their lives, complete their unfinished business, and prepare for death in the best manner possible. Palliative & Supportive Care’s staff remains supportive to both patients and families through death, and is available to support families throughout the first year of bereavement.
Settings of Care
All of Palliative & Supportive Care’s services are provided in the most appropriate setting for their patients’ needs – at home, in the hospital, or in the nursing home. When patients are well enough to be out and about, consultative visits for education, counseling, support, assistance with decisions, advance care planning, strategies for pain and symptom management, etc. are provided at the office, either on a short-term or an on-going basis. Relaxation and stress management sessions are also available for patients and families.
Advance Care Planning – Information and individual consultations are available to help patients and families develop advance care plans and think about MOLST (Medical Orders for Life Sustaining Treatment).
Cancer Survivorship Support Program – The goal of this program is to help people regain and maintain well-being throughout the entire cancer experience from diagnosis, through treatment, and after treatment has ended, by supporting and empowering them to cope with the disease and its effects so that they may live life fully.
Caregivers’ Connections Support Program – Palliative & Supportive Care’s staff provides education, counseling, and support, in private and/or group sessions, for family caregivers of persons with chronic illness or disabilities. Volunteers are available to provide practical assistance, companionship, and respite breaks. “Time Out” is a caregivers’ support group which meets twice monthly.
Children’s Services – Tapestries is a program of support for children who have life-threatening illness, coping with the serious illness of someone they love, or grieving the death of someone they love.
Community Education and Outreach – Public education, speakers, and consultations to schools, workplaces, and other organizations are provided. An extensive library of books is available for loan through Palliative & Supportive Care’s office, and others have been donated through the Nancy Adam Hospice Education Fund to the Nantucket Atheneum and the Saltmarsh Senior Center for further distribution.
Coping with Cancer Support Group – A support group for people with any stage of cancer and family members or friends of someone with cancer. Facilitated by a health care professional, participants come together to discuss concerns and share ideas in a safe and welcoming environment. Meets twice monthly.
Grief and Bereavement – Palliative & Supportive Care staff provides education, basic counseling, and support for individuals or groups who are affected by grief.
Look Good Feel Better – A program of the American Cancer Society to help patients with cancer manage the appearance-related side effects of their treatment.
Professional Education – Palliative & Supportive Care staff is available as a resource for health and human services professionals for information, education, and consultations on pain and symptom control, end-of-life care, and related subjects.
Volunteer Assistance – Palliative & Supportive Care’s trained volunteers are available to help in many ways including reading to the patient, assisting with errands, providing company, and just being there.
All of Palliative & Supportive Care’s services are provided free of charge. The program is supported through donations made to Palliative & Supportive Care of Nantucket Foundation.
Office Hours: Monday – Friday 8:30am – 4:30pm
*Appointments are necessary. Call 508.825.8325 to schedule an appointment today.
*Home visits are made whenever needed.
Parking: Parking Lot
Bike Path Access
- Mid Island Loop – Atlantic Avenue/Pleasant Street Stop
Charlene has been the Program Director and its Nurse Practitioner since developing the comprehensive care program in 1988, first as a hospice program, and, many years later, expanding it to a palliative and supportive care program. Prior to that time, she’d had experience as a Head Nurse at Massachusetts General Hospital for 5 years, Head Nurse at Nantucket Cottage Hospital for 6 years, then Nurse Practitioner for Nantucket’s Community Health Department for 2 years.
In her role as Nurse Practitioner, Charlene is the case manager of all of our comprehensive care patients, and brings many years of experience in pain control, symptom management, education, counseling, and support to patients and families facing any stage of life-threatening illness.
Charlene holds a Bachelor of Science in Nursing Degree from University of the State of New York, an Associate’s Degree from Northeastern University, and certification from Harvard University-Massachusetts General Hospital Adult Nurse Practitioner Program.
Bonnie has been a psychotherapist in private practice for over 25 years and has been the Palliative Care Counselor for PASCON since April, 2014. Bonnie brings her knowledge, skills, and compassion to any patient she serves and is available to all of our patients, whether affected by illness themselves, caregivers of someone who is ill, or bereaved family members.
Presently, she is also a Doctoral Candidate in Psychology at Saybrook University. Her orientation focuses on the existential/humanistic issues of life and she is particularly interested in the developmental aspects of aging and illness, and how to maintain psychological, physical and emotional wellbeing.
Ginnie has been the Program Assistant and Volunteer Coordinator of PASCON since 2002, after several years of serving as a hospice volunteer. Ginnie is usually the contact person when someone calls our office, and immediately puts people at ease by her warm and caring attitude and her commitment to helping them get the information or assistance they require. She also coordinates our patient care volunteers and assists clients who need to travel off-island in utilizing the Marla Ceely Lamb Cancer Transportation Fund.
Peter has been the head of the Social Services Department of Nantucket Cottage Hospital since 1985, and, as such, has served as the Social Worker on our Interdisciplinary Team since our program began. Peter brings a wealth of experience and information to our patients, particularly when needed for insurance issues, home caregiver planning, hospital discharge planning, and nursing home placement.
Prior to working at NCH, Peter had had experiences working for the Brockton Mental Health Department, the Department of Youth Services, and the Department of Social Services in Plymouth, Mass. Peter holds a Masters of Social Work Degree from Fordham University.
Dr. Lepore is the Medical Director and Chief of Surgery at Nantucket Cottage Hospital, and has volunteered his time to serve as the Medical Director of PASCON’s Interdisciplinary Team since the inception of the program as hospice in 1988. As our Medical Director, he has made himself available to oversee our program and serve as a resource for our program, staff, and patients. Though patients receive their medical care through their own private physicians, Dr. Lepore is available whenever consultations or back up are needed.
Dr. Lepore has practiced on Nantucket since 1983 and has been well known as the island’s surgeon, medical examiner, school physician, Lyme Disease expert, and, most recently, the subject of the 2012 book, Island Practice. by Pam Bulluck. He is a graduate of Harvard College and Tufts University School of Medicine, and is a board certified general surgeon and member of the American College of Surgeons. Prior to moving to Nantucket, he was an Assistant Professor of Surgery at Brown University Medical School, as well as the Director of Emergency Services and Surgical Director of the Intensive Care Unit at Roger Williams Hospital. He has also served as an Adjunct Assistant Professor in the Department of Infectious Disease and Global Health, Cummings School of Veterinary Medicine at Tufts University.
Rev. Linda Simmons is the minister of the Unitarian Universalist Meeting House on Nantucket and has served as the volunteer chaplain on PASCON’s Interdisciplinary Team since September of 2014. In her role as chaplain, Linda is available to all of our patients and families as a spiritual support and a compassionate listener. The role of chaplain does not take the place of a person’s clergyperson; it simply provides a non-denominational additional supportive presence to those who’d like one.
Prior to entering the ministry, Linda held a variety of positions in adult and secondary education, and was the senior manager for a program in New Hampshire for 12 years that worked with at risk youth. She attended The New Seminary in New York City and graduated from the University of New Hampshire with a B.A. in economics and a minor in philosophy.
Linda graduated from Harvard Divinity School in May, 2013. Her settled ministry at the Unitarian Universalist Meeting House on 11 Orange St began at the end of July, 2013.
- Joe Grause | President
- Rick Beaudette | Vice-President
- Lou Gennaro | Treasurer
- Gussie Beaugrand | Secretary
- Carolyn Durand
- Marianne Felch
- Laura Fletcher
- Heidi Daniels Girvin
- Jeanne Hicks
- Michael V. Misurelli
- Nancy Moylan
- Peggy Tramposch
- Clark Whitcomb
There are no upcoming events at this time.