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Hospice-Based Massage

10 CE Hours - E1038

Average rating based on the following evaluation questions:

  1. The presentation of the subject was clear and to the point.
  2. Content was interesting to me.
  3. I gained new knowledge.
  4. The materials held my attention.
  5. I can use this information in my practice.
  6. This program met my personal expectations.
  7. Overall quality of course content and materials were excellent.

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As more people reach beyond conventional medicine for healing, massage and bodywork practitioners are being invited to aid and comfort dying persons and those who care for them. In this profoundly intimate course, internationally acclaimed practitioner Irene Smith shares openly about the multidimensional challenges and personal healing nature of this work. The textbook, 2 CDs and 2 DVDs in this course clearly present Irene's practical and philosophical framework developed from 25 years' experience.

In this course, you will learn:

  • important self-care elements for the touch practitioner in hospice care
  • elements needed for ill or dying clients to receive a safe, comforting touch experience in hospice care
  • the importance of confidentiality and building trust in hospice care relationships
  • the emotional challenges of working with the dying and the recommended methods of self-care for the practitioner

This course is for any massage therapist or bodyworker who is considering working with dying persons. It will inspire you to learn new hands-on skills.

Featured Reviews

I am an ex-hospice nurse. I am now a volunteer (mostly doing massage). The course was a nice review, but I also learned new, insightful information as well. I appreciated the author's willingness to express some of the personal challenges she faced, because often, I experience many of the same challenges as a volunteer. It's different when you are working as a nurse because the patient /nurse relationship is different. As a volunteer, you need to have a more personal relationship with the client-something I struggle with. The author's acknowledgement and strategies regarding these challenges were very helpful to me.

- Gayle Ferruccio

I thoroughly appreciate the depth and range of Irene Smith's work. As a massage therapist who has worked with, but on a much more limited level, hospice patients, I found every breath of information and the details with which they were presented to be most beneficial.

- Mary Cooke, LMT

The use of audio, video and written materials made the course more accessible. Information around Hospice care is very valuable for the Massage Therapy practice. We are dealing with varying levels of health on a daily basis now more than ever before. Thank you for the open and compassionate program.

- Sharon Butler, RMT

I found myself going back and re-reading all the course material. I spent several days contemplating, digesting and integrating the information presented. The DVD and the CDs were very important part of my emotional development in preparing to work with Hospice care. Thank you for this class. Although it was developed for Hospice care, I found valuable tools to use in working with dementia and Alzheimer patients who are not in the final stages end-of-life care. Again, thank you.

- Vicky Steen, LMT, NCTMB

I never realized the thought and preparation for giving a massage to a hospice patient would be so involved. I am grateful that Irene was so thorough in her instructions and explanations of the best way to accomplish this.

- Susan Santi, NCTMB

I have worked as a massage therapist in palliative care at a nursing home and I had to learn everything for myself. This course is an excellent preparation for hospice- based massage for those who have had no experience, but also validated and supplemented my own experiences during the last 6 years.

- Patricia Rackowski, NCTMB

I LOVED this course so much. It fits into my massage and volunteer work perfectly right now. I was so engaged in the material that I finished it on the 2nd day! The materials were very user friendly and are able to be implemented immediately. I expected the book to be a bound booklet, rather than spiral bound. I would love it if I had a book that was more durable as it is one that I will DEFINITELY refer back to throughout my career, the rest of my life! My friend introduced me to this course specifically and your CE program and I would definitely take another CE course through IIHS. Thank you...And Thank You Irene!

- Rita Mason, CMT

Prior to my Mother's death last year, she was under Hospice care for several weeks and I was very impressed with their compassion and extent of care they provided. I would very much like to"pay it forward" and work with them doing therapeutic massage. Thank you for this valuable training.

- Nancy Weikal, NCTMB

When I first sat down to watch the videos, I thought.. OMG Snooze Alert, I did not take this class for meditation. and the noises within the camera work was irritating, but than all of a sudden the information became so interesting that I couldn't wait to watch and listen to the rest. I think this information will be extremely useful in the future. THANK YOU!!

- Valerie Orinski

Enjoyed this course very much. Well presented. Wanting to move my practice into this type of work and feel it gave down to earth, real advise and considerations. Thank you.

- Sue Wille

This course was wonderful.

- Jean Taczak, LMT, NCTMB

This course was wonderful. I wish this was taught 50 years ago when I graduated from nursing school. This is a fantastic course for all massage therapists. Massage is not all about deep tissue and myofascial and sports!! The workbook is well organized, easy to read and understand.

- Cheryl Chapman, LMT, NCTMB

I got so much from completing this course! It was well-presented and thoroughly written.

- Elizabeth S. Parsons, LMT

Very interesting. I hope to work at hospice so this refreshes my knowledge.

- Glenda Bea McArthur, LMT

I found this course to be very helpful.

- Joye L. Mills, LMT

Irene Smith is an inspiration. Her truth and wisdom are a gift in the work of hospice massage.

- Bethany Malley Wijesinghe, LMT

I have been a massage therapist hospice volunteer for quite a long time, and needed some CEUs to fulfill my Board transition. I chose this course because I knew I would learn something that would help me, despite my already long term experience. I am pleased with this course, I picked up some new useful information.... never too old to learn something new! Thank you for this course!

- Jennifer DeMaria, LMT, NCTMB

Irene Smith is an amazing and inspiring human being. Fantastic course!

- Amy Fontaine-Smith, LMT, NCTMB

Although I'm not currently working with hospice patients, this is where I have a very strong interest. This course was wonderfully instructive and actually helped me get in touch with feelings and experiences concerning my own father's death.

- Stella Riccardi, LMT

This course really opened my eyes. I feel like now I have more knowledge for this subject area. I really loved this course!

- Toni May, LMT

The slide show and audio were a great touch...they added a more personal connection to this work.

- Sandra Pomeroy, LMT

Great course. Very heartfelt. Really felt a connection to the author and her experiences. Gave good insight and reflection.

- Amy Davies, LMT

This course was straight forward. I feel as though I was able to learn on my own, something I didn't know I was capable of doing with out a classroom experience. I highly recommend this site.

- Michelle Vargas, LMT

This course was excellent. It made me cry, a lot. But it allowed me to see the grief I have had since my father's death from Alzheimers in a healthier aspect. As a caregiver, a nurse and a LMT, this was the best course I have taken.

- Claudia Griffin, LMT

This course was very informative. As I was reading I stopped several times to share it with co-workers. It helped me to address some of my own wishes in facing death.

- Carolyn F. Battle, LMT

This course was very helpful and looked at aspects of hospice care that can be overlooked or difficult to deal with. Well done.

- Susan Holquin, LMT

This course is especially valuable as I've begun Hospice volunteer work. The material was clear and pertinent. Thank you for offering this.

- D'Anne Olsen, LMT

As a registered nurse for 30 years and LMT for 20 years, I have gleaned new information for my practice of both through this course. Very satisfied!

- Judith Thibado, LMT

I am currently working with a hospice service and, even though I have been a LMT for 14 years, this course extended my knowledge and will help me further with hospice patients. Thank you.

- Susan E. Redick, LMT

Great course. Very heartfelt. Really felt a connection to the author and her experiences. Gave good insight and reflection.

- Amy Davies, LMP

I found the information in this course enlightening. And it will be extremely helpful along the path that I am pursing for my career

- Nancy Menard

I really enjoyed this course. I lost my dad a few years ago and can relate to this. My mom is next. Thanks for sharing this with me.

- Carol Lucero, NCTMB

Excellent, was exactly what I was looking for! This course is amazing and I highly recommend. Gives a good look at the emotional side not just the clinical side of Hospice work.

- Elizabeth Mulholland, LMT

Very educational. Material was easy to read and understand. I now have the basic insight to hospice based massage.

- Danielle Ungaro, LMT, NCTMB

Great course if you are in the healthcare/hospice field of work. Really helped me to get a better understanding of my goals as a massage therapist in hospice care. Enjoyed reading the material and will continue to reference back to it when needed.

- Jacey Cobb, LMT

I enjoyed the care and slow approach with which Irene presented this sensitive and powerful course. I worked with end stage AIDS patients and could relate to Chuck's story. I plan to persue a position in Hospice, and this course was greatly beneficial. Thank you

- Denise Lazott, LMT, NCTMB

Excellent Course, really enjoyed taking it and learned a lot.

- Cheryl Roos, LMT

Enjoyed the course very much!

- Eleanor Larkin, LMT, RM

This course was really amazing. I am a hospice nurse and a licensed massage therapist and I was amazed at how much I was able to glean from this course. I would recommend this course to anyone!

- Beth Villante, LMT

Being a Massage Therapist and a Hospice Volunteer I found the information informative relative and supportive in the knowledge I have in both areas. Very helpful and comforting on the same level. Thank you.

- Linda Whitaker, LMT

Excellent course!

- Rachel Berry-Tracey

I loved this course! Interesting, well-written. After taking this course, I want to take additional training, so I can do this work!

- Dru Gehring, LMT, NCTMB

Great Course!! Very helpful.

- Jodi Eaton, CMT Golden, CO.

This is an EXCELLENT course. Even though I work in the area of death and dying as a nurse and a massage therapist, and I have taught workshops on touch for the dying, I gained very valuable information and had many things validated for me in a refreshingly new way. Thank you Irene!!!

- A. Kline, LMT

I have volunteered in hospice doing massage and found it emotional yet very rewarding so this course will only enhance what I have learned in the past. Thank you.

- D. Shilling, LMT


  • Text - 82 pages
  • 2 DVDs - 130 minutes total
  • 2 CDs - 88 minutes total
  • Multiple-choice test - if you prefer to test online please select the "test online" option
  • Certificate upon completion - if you prefer to print your certificate at home instantly, please select the online option

Display Certificates suitable for framing are available for $10 in addition to the certificate included with your tuition. Click here to order a Display Certificate.


The Institute is approved by the National Certification Board for Therapeutic Massage and Bodywork (NCBTMB) as a continuing education Approved Provider. Approved Provider 049478-00.

Credits also accepted by the AMTA, ABMP and NAHA.

For information regarding your specific state massage license requirements and approvals, visit our Massage Therapy Continuing Education Requirements page by clicking here.

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