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History

Providing Hospice and Support Services in and around the Cedar Valley since 1979

Cedar Valley Hospice began in 1979 when a group of forward thinking individuals had a vision and recognized the importance of quality care for those near the end of their lives. The formation of Cedar Valley Hospice occurred four years after the first hospice in the United States was established, and we have worked since then to honor their foresight.

Major milestones for Cedar Valley Hospice were achieved in the 1980s. The first patient was admitted in 1980, and our organization was also granted 501(c)(3) status by the Internal Revenue Service.

In 1982, another milestone was reached: the opening of the first inpatient hospice unit in Iowa. Inpatient care was recognized early on by Cedar Valley Hospice leadership as a necessity for a comprehensive care program, and a six-bed unit was opened in Waterloo at what was then the Schoitz Medical Center.

The growth of Cedar Valley Hospice also brought along changes. In March of 1988, the recently renamed Cedar AIDS Support System, which provides medical case management and support to those diagnosed with HIV or AIDS and their families, began to be managed by Cedar Valley Hospice. By the end of 1992, Hospice of Buchanan County and Grundy County Hospice had been successfully merged with Cedar Valley Hospice, and the same was done with Butler-Bremer Hospice in November of 1998.

Work on the Hospice Home, formerly the office of Dr. Donald Bickley, began in 1999, with the official opening on February 1, 2000. This was a very important milestone, as it provided an alternative for hospitalization for those needing hospice care in a setting that provided the same comforts of home.

Growth in programs and services was also prevalent, as Cedar Valley Hospice added grief services, a children’s grief program, palliative care services through LINK and complimentary therapies such as music and massage therapy for a comprehensive set of services.

From grassroots efforts, Cedar Valley Hospice as grown and developed into a professional health care agency committed to providing comprehensive end-of-life care and support services. We continue to meet the unique needs of individuals with advanced-stage illnesses, their families and those who grieve with our staff of over 130 professionals and 450 volunteers. Cedar Valley Hospice has been and will always be committed to providing the utmost care and support possible for our communities.