VITAS® Healthcare Opens New Inpatient Hospice Unit in Lake Wales

Categories: People & Places.

Photo: Ribbon cutting at VITAS unit in Lake Wales, FL.

Home-like facility at AdventHealth projected to serve 400+ patients annually

Hospice patients and their families in Florida’s Polk County can find extra layers of clinical support and high-acuity, comfort-focused care at the new VITAS Healthcare Inpatient Hospice Unit (IPU) in Lake Wales.

The company’s first IPU in Polk County offers around-the-clock symptom management by a team of interdisciplinary experts for hospice patients whose symptoms can no longer be managed at home or in their preferred care setting.

“As the nation’s leading provider of end-of-life care, we are privileged to serve and support patients who require levels of care beyond routine hospice service,” said Deborah Totten, general manager for VITAS.

Located on the campus of AdventHealth Lake Wales hospital at 410 South 11th Street, the IPU accepts hospice-eligible referrals from all neighboring hospitals, assisted living communities, physicians’ offices and other providers. VITAS previously cared for patients with advanced illness in the hospital’s general inpatient beds since 2016.

“Our partnership with AdventHealth has proven mutually favorable for everyone involved, especially for patients and their families who benefit from seamless care transitions,” Totten said.

The new IPU is expected to serve more than 400 patients annually.

Eight private rooms equipped with recliners, televisions and private bathrooms provide home-like comfort in a clinically optimized setting. Family and friends can visit 24/7—in accordance with current health guidelines and safety protocols from the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention— and utilize overnight accommodations to remain by their loved one’s side. The unit also features a specialized bariatric room.

VITAS continues to deliver in-home hospice care in Highlands, Polk and Hardee counties and has been a Midstate Florida provider since 2014. VITAS clinicians and care teams are available 24/7 to offer care and answer questions.

Clinicians can download the VITAS Healthcare mobile app for 24/7 referrals, locations and interactive hospice eligibility guidelines, or contact VITAS 24/7 at 800.93.VITAS.

Want to join the nation’s leading provider of end-of-life care? Discover a fulfilling career and find available openings at

About VITAS Healthcare

Established in 1978, VITAS Healthcare is a pioneer and leader in the American hospice movement. Headquartered in Miami, Florida, VITAS (pronounced VEE-tahs) operates 49 hospice programs in 14 states (California, Connecticut, Delaware, Florida, Georgia, Illinois, Kansas, Missouri, New Jersey, Ohio, Pennsylvania, Texas, Virginia and Wisconsin) and the District of Columbia. VITAS employs 11,213 professionals who care for patients with advanced illness, primarily in the patients’ homes, and also in the company’s 28 inpatient hospice units as well as in hospitals, nursing homes and assisted living communities/residential care facilities for the elderly. At the conclusion of the first quarter of 2021, VITAS reported an average daily census of 17,961.

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