Grief and Bereavement Support

Despite modern medicine's advances, some patients inevitably lose their battle with cancer. City of Hope believes in helping patients reach the end of their lives with dignity and in as much comfort as possible, while helping families and friends cope with grief and loss.
City of Hope’s commitment to the continuum of care ensures that the family is viewed as an extension of the patient.

“When we treat a patient here, we treat a family,” says Jo Ann S. Namm, child life manager and specialist in the Department of Supportive Care Medicine.
Sometimes, however, a patient dies. When this happens, City of Hope’s care for the family does not stop.

Child life specialists, spiritual care chaplains and clinical social workers offer end-of-life counseling for patients and bereavement support for caregivers and families. Caring professionals can ensure that families' wishes are understood and honored by helping them create advanced directives. A supportive care nurse on staff specifically helps patients transition from the hospital to hospice.
To speak with a professional regarding end-of-life or bereavement issues, please call us at (626) 218-2273.

Group Support, Events, and Resources

Bereavement Support Groups
Family members can find themselves wandering an unfamiliar wilderness of grief when cancer takes a loved one. City of Hope’s bereavement groups offer a safe place for them to explore and reconcile their feelings, and find their way back to their new normal lives.

Spouses, close relatives, parents, siblings and children learn about grief, mourning, healing, communication and coping strategies through a series of 12 weekly meetings. Perhaps more importantly, they find companionship and validation from others experiencing similar profound loss, disconnect and confusion about how to move forward.
Preregistration for the 12-week support group series is required. For further information, please contact Jo-Ann Namm at (626) 218-4513 or email [email protected] 

Evening of Remembrance 

The Evening of Remembrance offers City of Hope families the chance to formally celebrate the lives of adult patients who have died over the past year. The event provides a sense of community through remembrance rituals, testimonials and musical reflection.

The hope is that the evening allows a person’s internal grief to be made external so that it is no longer carried alone.
The American Psychological Association advises that, to move forward after the loss of a loved one, individuals and families should take time to honor the person they’ve lost. We agree.

Support Groups for Grief and Bereavement in the Community