Compassion and Support


Patients & Families

About Us


The Community-Wide End-of-life/Palliative Care Initiative gratefully acknowledges the senior leadership and staff of Excellus BlueCross BlueShield and its affiliated organizations for support of the development and implementation of this web site and the multiple concrete projects launched by the initiative and replicated across New York State.

The Initiative recognizes the efforts of more than 150 community volunteers who participated in launching the Community-Wide End-of-Life/Palliative Care Initiative along with the Education for Physicians on End-of-Life Care (EPEC) faculty from across Upstate New York who share our mission of providing high quality, person-centered, effective care at the end-of-life and play a critical role in collaborating on concrete projects and replicating our efforts in Upstate New York. Additionally, the Initiative appreciates the countless professionals and community volunteers from Western New York, Central New York, Utica Region, Southern Tier and the North Country who participate in the development and implementation of these projects. With the Medical Orders for Life-Sustaining Treatment (MOLST) Program, the reach extends now across New York State and beyond.

We acknowledge the role of our Collaborators. The success of the Community-Wide End-of-life/Palliative Care Initiative is due to the collaborative efforts of the lead organizations with dedicated professionals regionally and across the state along with partnerships with regional , state and national organizations.  Together, we are making a difference.

Special thanks are extended to the New York State Department of Health (NYSDOH) and the Medical Society of the State of New York (MSSNY) Ethics Committee for their support of the MOLST Pilot legislation and Chapter Amendment, as well as countless community collaborators and professional associations across the state for their support of implementation of the MOLST Program. Special thanks are extended to Excellus BlueCross BlueShield for moving MOLST beyond the Rochester community.

The Medical Orders for Life-Sustaining Treatment (MOLST) Medical Legal Conference entitled Improving Communication and Decision-Making for Seriously Ill Patients was held in Rochester in September 2006 and in Syracuse in November 2006.  These conferences were made possible in part by a grant from the Partnerships in Law and Aging Program, a project of the Borchard Foundation Center on Law and Aging and the American Bar Association Commission on Law and Aging.


We gratefully acknowledge a member of our Advisory Group, Rita Violet Augustine.  Rita was the beloved Executive Vice President and Chief Operating Officer of Catholic Family Center (CFC) until her untimely death in March 2002. Prior to joining CFC, Mrs. Augustine, CSW, ACSW, was a leader in other human services organizations. She sat on numerous boards, was active in her church and was devoted to her family. Mrs. Augustine touched the lives of hundreds of people and is greatly missed.

"Rita was a special woman and community leader. We were privileged to receive her counsel and sage advice as we began the initiative. We dedicate our ongoing work to her memory," says Dr. Pat Bomba, co-leader of the initiative.  

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