Hospice & Palliative Care

Our Team


Vanessa Johnson, MD, MPH, HMDC, Medical Director Center for Hospice Care

  • Eastern Connecticut Hematology, Oncology (ECHO)
  • Credentialed at The William W. Backus Hospital, Day Kimball Hospital and L + M Hospital
  • Medical School: Cornell University Medical College
  • Fellowship: Brown Medical School
  • Board Certification: Hospice/Palliative Medicine, Hematology, Oncology and Internal Medicine.

Claire Reardon, M.D., Medical Co-director Center for Hospice Care

  • The Robert Larner, M.D. College of Medicine at The University of Vermont
  • Board Certification: Family Medicine, Hospice and Palliative Medicine
  • Affiliated with L+M Hospital

Elizabeth (Lisa) Bragaw, RPH, Pharm.D.

  • Doctor of Pharmacy: University of Florida
  • Bachelor of Science: Northeastern University
  • Representative to the Board of Directors of the Connecticut Pharmacists Association

Sarah Hospod, RD, CD-N, CDE

  • Bachelor of Science in Dietetics: University of Rhode Island
  • Internship: University of Connecticut
  • Backus Hospital Registered Dietitian and Certified Diabetes Educator

Lisa Orowson, RN, MSN, CWOCN

  • Bachelor of Science in Nursing: University of Connecticut
  • Masters of Science in Nursing: University of Hartford
  • Wound, Ostomy and Continence Program: Wicks Educational Associates, Inc.
  • Backus Hospital Nurse Leader Wound and Ostomy


This department includes Primary Care Nurses, APRNs, Per Diem Nurses, Admit Nurses and Hospital Liaisons.

Anne Marie Casaol, RN, BSN
Clinical Supervisor

Emma Dugas, RN, BSN
Clinical Supervisor


This department includes Medical Social Workers, Spiritual Care Counselors, Bereavement Counselors and an Expressive Art Therapist.

Cathie Sedlack, LCSW
Supervisor of Counseling Services

Hospice Aides

This department includes Hospice Aides and provides in-service training to professionals.

Lisa Besse, RN
Clinical Educator and Hospice Aide Supervisor

Volunteer Department

Jeanette Brooks, B.S.
Volunteer Program Administrator


  • Accreditations and Certifications:
  • We Honor Veterans
  • Hartford Courant Top Places to Work 2014
  • Hartford Courant Top Places to Work 2015
  • Hartford Courant Top Places to Work 2017