Hospice Liaison, Compassionate Care Hospice; Director of Operations, Del-Ware LLC
Making end-of-life plans is difficult, but that’s where hospice care facilitators like Kristy Handley come in. Her passion for health care came early. Her mom was a nurse and Handley worked as a candy striper at Kent General Hospital (now Bayhealth). “I just felt like I [could] make a huge impact in that area,” she says.
Handley has dedicated much of her career to hospice care, the significance of which was reaffirmed this year after losing two grandmothers. “Watching what our family went through and knowing how we were able to be a family versus just a caregiver all the time was an amazing experience,” she says.
As a hospice liaison with Compassionate Care Hospice, she educates individuals in Kent and Sussex counties about their options. Having formerly helmed the Brain Injury Association of Delaware, she continues to focus on those with traumatic brain injuries, as well as dementia patients.
During the pandemic, Handley also worked to establish virtual support groups. As a member of the state council’s Brain Injury Committee, she and other members are working to create a comprehensive database of brain injuries so they can find better support and resources for those in need. Whatever she does, she’s supporting others. Hospice care is “about making sure that your wishes are known and making sure that you are living the best life that you want in the time that you have left.”