Hospice of St. Mary’s is here to provide help and support to those living with an advanced illness. Founded in 1981, Hospice of St. Mary’s was started by a group of community volunteers under the direction of Dr. Patrick Jarboe. After several decades, we continue to provide high quality and compassionate end-of-life care for our patients and their families.
Hospice of St. Mary’s is a not-for-profit service that provides physical, psychological, spiritual care and comfort to those who are terminally ill and to their families. Hospice also offers grief support to families and community members who have experienced a loss.
In 1981, St. Mary’s County community leader and activist Betsy Barley, along with Dr. Jarboe and other community volunteers, founded Hospice of St. Mary’s. Betsy was trained by Hospice of Northern Virginia and then recruited friends and neighbors to help in establishing the concept of hospice care in St. Mary’s County. In 1982, a Board of Directors, Articles of Incorporation and By-laws were created, and community education began with 20 people graduating from the first volunteer training class. In April 1982, Hospice of St. Mary’s cared for its first patient.
In 1990, Hospice of St. Mary’s was granted a license for “General Hospice Program.” Medical and clinical services were provided by local home health agencies, but volunteers continued to provide patient care and bereavement support.
The hospice program received Medicare certification in 1992, resulting in increased paid staff to comply with the mandate that nursing, social work and counseling be direct (non-contract) hospice services. To ensure continued support, Hospice of St. Mary’s remains a department of MedStar St. Mary’s Hospital. This affiliation has enabled MedStar St. Mary’s Hospital and Hospice of St. Mary’s to offer the community seamless, non-profit care for end-of-life patients.