Letter: Protect Hospice Care in San Juans

By Marie-Luz Villa MD AGSF, Main Operations Manager, Hospice of San Juan

San Juan County, being relatively tiny in the eyes of Medicare, receives insurance-funded hospice care under the umbrella of Hospice of the Northwest (HNW), which is based in Skagit County.

Although both San Juan Island and Lopez Island have all-volunteer hospice organizations to complement the nursing care available from HNW, around-the-clock access to nursing support and other critical resources for end-of-life care is provided by HNW alone.

This currently is under threat.

Were you aware that Hospice of the Northwest is under consideration for sale to Bristol Management Team, a for-profit hospice company that is part of Webster Equity Partners, based in Massachusetts?

For-profit hospices do not have a good track record. San Juan County, which is part of the HNW Certificate of Need, has not been included in requests for public comment.

Is there anything this community could do to help protect hospice care to vulnerable adults in our county?

Please contact your county council rep and your island’s public hospital district right away to urge intervention in this potentially disastrous sale!



Posted on October 29, 2020 at 4:30 am by

Categories: Letters


  1. Dear Mariluz,
    Thank you for who you are and all you do to serve the community. We very much appreciate you.

    Comment by Jim Petkiewicz on October 29, 2020 at 8:42 am
  2. Also … please send letters to the editor to Skagit Valley Herald and the Commissioners of Skagit PHD #1 and #304 – the co-owners of HNW. There has been a huge community and staff out-cry and the Commissioner are hearing us … but, we need to continue to send them a message that this is not OK.

    Comment by Kathryn L Clary on October 30, 2020 at 8:38 pm

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