Could Your Patient Benefit From Hospice Care?

What is Hospice?

Hospice care is focused on caring for, but not treating, a person with a terminal illness. All aggressive treatments that may inflict pain or discomfort are discontinued. The primary focus is on the person's spiritual and emotional well being. There is a medical team involved to discuss and implement the wishes of the person and their family during this difficult time. Most of the time this care is delivered in the comfort of the person's home but can also be given in the hospital or long-term care setting.

"At the center of hospice and palliative care is the belief that each of us has the right to die pain-free and with dignity, and that our families will receive the necessary support to allow us to do so. " -National Hospice and Palliative Care Organization

Services Provided

  • Provides basic medical care focusing on pain and symptom management.
  • Ongoing access to the interdisciplinary hospice team.
  • Helps the patient with the emotional and spiritual aspects of dying.
  • Provides needed drugs, medical supplies, and other necessary equipment.
  • Coaches the family on how to care for the patient including psychological, spiritual, and emotional issues.
  • Delivers services like speech therapy, occupational therapy, and physical therapy if needed.
  • Makes short-term inpatient care available if needed.
  • Can deliver respite care for caregivers or family if needed.
  • Provides guidance with end of life questions and closure.
  • Provides bereavement care and counseling to surviving family and friends.
  • Counseling and support for your loved ones after a person dies.

"My grandmother suffered a massive stroke a few years ago. This left her with little quality of life. In the last months of her life she was diagnosed with pneumonia. Rather than pursue aggressive treatment, we decided to involve hospice care. She was given the care that she needed to have little pain and discomfort when she passed away." -Courtney T.

How Does It Work?

Usually family acts as the primary caregivers for their loved ones. The person's care team usually consists of their personal doctor, a hospice doctor, nurses, social workers, chaplains, and home health aides. Members of the care team make routine visits and help to provide any additional resources that may be needed. During this difficult time, many people feel they have lost control of their lives. Hospice care can provide them with the options they have available to help them feel empowered during the last months of their lives.

AuthorCourtney Tracy