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Home > Giving > Hospice Care > History
"The Hospice House has had a far-reaching impact on our community. It has become a center for bereavement services and grief counseling as well as compassionate, end-of-life care for patients and families unable to stay in their home. I am humbled and grateful for the amazing nurses, therapists, chaplains and volunteers who dedicate their lives to hospice." — Donna Oldorf
The beginnings of hospice developed in 1980. Dr. Don Bomkamp, a family practice physician, advocated and sought support to begin a hospice program in Cedar Rapids. After the death of his son, David, from malignant melanoma, Dr. Bomkamp was more determined than ever to allow patients to receive end-of-life care at home. The Sisters of Mercy and Mercy Medical Center stepped forward to help, founding Hospice of Mercy, one of the first programs in the state. According to Dr. Bomkamp, "The biggest asset we had was Mercy Hospital. They were four steps ahead of the entire community. They made it happen."
Thanks to the commitment of the Sisters of Mercy and Mercy Medical Center, Eastern Iowans had one of the first hospice programs in the state developed. 25 years later, the need for a hospice facility was undeniable when 3,500 signatures were collected in a petition drive.
On May 29, 2007, the Dennis and Donna Oldorf Hospice House of Mercy opened and became a reality, thanks to a generous gift of $1.1 million from Donna Oldorf in memory of her husband, Dennis, a Hospice of Mercy patient. Now, the journey continues.
The Oldorf Hospice House has been an asset and resource for so many patients and families needing support, care and counseling. The homelike and serene atmosphere of the house lends itself to a place that families can convene, connect and share. Many ask for ways to memorialize loved ones or honor hospice workers. Your gifts support the many services the hospice house provides.
Nearly 40 years later, the continued need for hospice remains strong. The ability for patients and families to make their own end-of-life decisions and be compassionately supported continues. If you have been touched by Hospice of Mercy and would like to memorialize a loved one or honor a hospice worker, you can make a gift today. Gifts support the Hospice of Mercy program, which includes care in private homes, hospitals and nursing facilities, along with support groups and bereavement counseling and services not covered by insurance or Medicare.
Donations to the Hospice of Mercy should be mailed to:Mercy Foundation701 Tenth Street SECedar Rapids, Iowa 52403
Donations of $1,000 qualify the donor to inscribe a brick to be placed in the Dennis and Donna Oldorf Hospice House of Mercy courtyard or meditation pathway.
For more information, please call (319) 398-6206 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.