The Nancy Caroline Hospice of the Upper Galilee (HUG) is a nonprofit home hospice founded in Northern Israel in 1994 to treat terminal cancer patients at home. Unfortunately, in a country with so many other pressing issues, delivery of effective care is not a priority. This situation is particularly problematic in Northern Israel in the Upper Galilee panhandle where the nearest hospice facilities are over two hours away (Haifa), and even the closest hospital (Safed) can be an hour’s drive away.

Hospice of the Upper Galilee in Northern Israel was established to give effective care in this region and to provide support for patients’ families. To date we have provided home hospice services to almost 800 patients ranging in age from 3 to 97 representing all sectors of the community – Jewish, Druze, Arab and Circassian. Our present roster includes up to 45 active patients. We have been running this high since the summer. We are on call around the clock. We also serve as a regional information resource to physicians and nurses in our area, acquainting local family doctors and nurses with the principles of pain control and other palliative measures.

Our mostly part time HUG team includes 3 physicians, 5 nurses, 2 social workers, a music Thanatologist (harpist), an art therapist, a volunteer psychologist, a secretary and a medical director. We also have a strong volunteer support group which helps both staff and patients. Approximately 70% of our patients die peacefully at home. Without our services this would not be possible. In the future we hope to establish a small inpatient facility for patients who do not have a family member or other primary caregiver.

For more information in Israel contact Dr. James Shalom, Director: jshalom@actcom.co.il