NHPCO Announces End-Of-Life Doula Council Formation

Conscious Dying Institute responds to a deep collective call to give and receive life-affirming care before, nearing and after death. Our transformational Certificate Training Program renews the purpose and art of caregiving as a spiritual practice, awakens innate healing gifts and talents, and creates beautiful rites of passage guided by wishes and choices of families and patients.

(Alexandria, Va) – National Hospice and Palliative Care Organization, the leading hospice and palliative care membership organization in the U.S., is pleased to announce the formation of a Council to provide information and resources to its members, affiliated organizations, and the public regarding the role of end-of-life doulas.

The Council’s inaugural meeting took place April 25 in Washington, DC to define the Council’s purpose and design activities that will serve its mission.

End-of-life Doulas (EOLDs) are caregivers who offer non-medical, holistic support and comfort to dying people and their families. Services are varied to meet individual needs and requirements, and may include education and guidance, as well as emotional, spiritual or practical care.

NHPCO hopes to involve its membership in the long-range goal of incorporating EOLDs into care delivery, either as agency staff, specially trained volunteers, or as independent contractors engaged by families. EOLDs enrich the experience for patients, family members and friends, and strengthen the relationship between medical and nonmedical end-of-life support. Founding members of the Council include:

  • Deanna Cochran, Council Chair National End-of-Life Doula Alliance, and Quality of Life Care,  Austin, TX
  • Henry Fersko-Weiss, Council Vice Chair International End-of-Life Doula Association,  Wyckoff, NJ
  • Patty Burgess National End-of-Life Doula Alliance, and Teaching Transitions and Doing Death Differently, Bensalem, PA 
  • Tarron Estes National End of Life Doula Alliance, and Conscious Dying Institute, Boulder, CO
  • Suzanne O’Brien National End-of-Life Doula Alliance, and Doula Givers , New York, NY
  • Merilynne Rush National End-of-Life Doula Alliance, President, and Lifespan Doula Association, Ann Arbor, MI
  • Lee Webster  National End-of-Life Doula Alliance, President ex officio, and the National Home Funeral Alliance, Holderness, NH
 Tarron Estes, Founder of the Conscious Dying Institute

Tarron Estes, Founder of the Conscious Dying Institute

Tarron Estes: Co-Founding Member of End Of Life Doula Council

Dear Colleagues and Friends,

In September of 2017, I was invited to attend a NHPCO informational meeting with five other end of life doula trainers to discuss how to bring EOL Doulas to families and patients served by NHPCO's members.

Fast forward to April 24, 2018: We now have a new NHPCO EOL Doula Council!!! The Council plans to evaluate the efficacy of EOLD collaboration with hospice services by conducting research to establish best practices for the future.


It is a very expansive moment supportive of a growing national concern for the wellbeing of our families and of humanity as a whole, which aligns perfectly with the mission of the Conscious Dying Institute: "To Restore Death to its Sacred Place in the Beauty, Mystery, and Celebration of Life”.

I serve as a founding member of NEDA participating in the NHPCO EOL Doula Council and its ongoing study. As founder of the Conscious Dying Institute, I am working on establishing  partnerships  with hospices, home health agencies and senior communities so that upon graduation, we can place our Sacred Passage End of Life Doulas in this important role providing guidance, support and comfort in the end of life for the dying and their families. Research will be established that will connect to these affiliates to follow the good work of the End of Life Doula and the positive effect they make with the clients, patients, and families they serve.

Thank you for everything you contribute to this Great Work!

       Tarron Estes

Please contact Marie David, Executive Director, for more information on how your organization can participate in incorporating our graduates and/or End of Life Doula Training into your facility. Contact: marie@consciousdyinginstitue.com | 303-440-8018