Serious Illness

For the Caregivers and Families You Serve

For Whomever the Person Calls “Family” and Anyone Providing Direct Care

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  • 30 videos, 2-4 minutes each
  • Branded to your organization
  • Teaching guides for your professionals to use with caregivers/families
  • For local and distance family members
  • Cut costs of extensive, expensive printed materials

Topics include:

  • The importance of Advance Directives
  • Adjusting Care to Changing Needs
  • Relationships (and Conflict)
  • Grief (more than just “Anticipatory”)
  • Caregiver Stress
  • Children and Teens
  • Veterans
  • Distance Family Needs
  • More …

Click Here for Descriptions


Bundle this with any or all of our 3 video libraries

  • Family Support Through Serious Illness
  • Hospice Training for Caregivers & Family Members
    • Optional Add-On Spanish Version
  • Want to Understand Your Grief?

Composing Life’s Family Support Through Serious Illness videos help tend the caregiver and family’s needs through serious illness, palliative care, and hospice care. Our Hospice Training library is more specific to hospice care, for tending the patient’s needs.

Our Want to Understand Your Grief? videos apply to all grief experiences. They gently update the outdated, too often misused “Stages of Grief” with evidence based, contemporary grief research and clinical practice.


For Your Professionals and Volunteers

Click Here to Sample


  • Prepare your teams and volunteers to use the “Family Support Through Serious Illness” library with our “Empathy for Hospice Professionals” video and reflection questions
  • Use our “Empathy for Hospice Professionals” as a stand-alone training, either on-line self-learning or as a group activity for orientation, staff/team meetings, and more

Click Here for Descriptions


  • Engage Dr. Joy Berger for live, interactive teaching with your professionals, volunteers, leaders, and/or community
  • Conferences, workshops, webcam-webinars, 1:1
  • Specialties include empathy, communication, Emotional Intelligence, professional/personal self-care, grief care
  • Newest topic: The Patient’s Experience & Your Technology – Does It Help or Hurt?
  • For the creative: Composing Life: Music Metaphors for Compassionate Care


For Your Leaders

Do You Know?

  • The Hospice Conditions of Participation (CoPs) name the “family” 423 times! And, these refer to the “family”–as the patient defines “family”–not just to the primary caregiver.
  • These same Hospice CoPs name the “caregiver” another 125 times, for cases in which the primary caregiver is not considered “family” (like with a paid caregiver).

Click Here for Descriptions


  • Examining Your CoPs, CAHPS, and Caregiver Gaps
  • Caregiver/Family Grief Support: More than Just “Anticipatory”
  • Empathy: Assumptions? Or Assessments and Accountability?
  • Hospice Compare for Leaders
  • Hospice Compare for Teams
  • Tending Distance Caregiver Needs
  • More … what do you need?

For Individuals Seeking Resources or Consult


Often, we can set up a customized solution for you, or refer you to a relevant resource


Your Care Team Never Interacts With Some Key Family Members?

The National Institute for Aging defines “long distance family” as living only 1 hour away.
Think about it. Most adult sons and daughters under age 65 work during your Care Teams’ visits.
Even if schedules flow like clockwork, it takes …

  • 1 hour to get there.
  • Another hour to be there.
  • Another hour to get back.

For example, many sons and daughters cannot afford the time or money to get there during the day. Often, they visit their parent in the evening or weekend to relieve the primary caregiver. What timely, easy to access, cost-effective resources are you providing for them, & other family members? This adult child may not be the primary caregiver, but they are still coping with the serious illness–and perhaps hospice care–of their parent. They too, have questions. Fears. Hopes. They too, need and deserve your support.

What about core family members who live hours away? A full day’s travel?

  • Caregiver Videos: Ask about our Across the Miles set of videos, in Composing Life’s Family Support Through Serious Illness video library.
  • Teaching: Ask about Joy’s session, Building Bridges With Distance Families (ready-to-roll for your Continuing Education sessions)
  • Consult and Coaching: Ask about Composing Life’s leadership consult and coaching to improve your systems for teams to communicate better with distance caregivers and family members.