Music, pet, massage and aroma therapies are part of a new “complementary therapies” program at the county’s biggest provider of end-of-life care. Hospice of Kitsap joins other local hospice providers who’ve always offered some degree of complementary therapies. Now it’s expanding its program, starting with a dedicated staff person and even a budget line.

Statistics are hard to come by, but Dr. Kate Brostoff, a Group Health medical director, said the trend may be growing, driven by patients’ families requests

“It’s something that the public wants,” Brostoff said … The most popular complementary therapy—gentle massage—is given now to half the patients at Hospice of Kitsap.

Kitsap Sun, Bremerton, Washington, Aug. 16, 2010