When a loved one is diagnosed with a terminal illness, it can be hard to know where to begin. You want to ensure they receive the best care possible and are comfortable during the rest of their life, while also understanding what the options are for care and how everything will be covered financially. First things first, it’s important to define the criteria for who can receive hospice care.
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Being a caregiver to your loved one is a vital aspect to their well-being, but it can be exhausting, overwhelming, and sometimes thankless. Your loved one may lash out at you and make it difficult by refusing to comply with what needs to be done. Your loved one may see you as the person who has taken away his or her freedom and life choices. Most people do not give up making their own decisions easily. But there are things you can do to keep a positive perspective and lower your stress level.
1 min read
What happens if I cannot stay at home due to my increasing care need and require a different place to stay during my final phase of life?
A growing number of hospice programs have their own hospice facilities or have arrangements with freestanding hospice houses, hospitals or inpatient residential centers to care for patients who cannot stay where they usually live. These patients may require a different place to live during this phase of their life when they need extra care. However, care in these settings is not covered under the Medicare or Medicaid Hospice Benefit. It is best to find out, well before hospice may be needed, if insurance or any other payer covers this type of care or if patients/families will be responsible for payment.
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Can I be cared for by hospice if I reside in a nursing facility or other type of long-term care facility?
Hospice services can be provided to a terminally ill person wherever they live. This means a patient living in a nursing facility or long-term care facility can receive specialized visits from hospice nurses, home health aides, chaplains, social workers, and volunteers, in addition to other care and services provided by the nursing facility. The hospice and the nursing home will have a written agreement in place in order for the hospice to serve residents of the facility.
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What role does the hospice volunteer serve?
Hospice volunteers are generally available to provide different types of support to patients and their loved ones including running errands, preparing light meals, staying with a patient to give family members a break, and lending emotional support and companionship to patients and family members.
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How does the hospice work to keep the patient comfortable?
Many patients may have pain and other serious symptoms as illness progresses. Our Hospice staff receive special training to care for all types of physical and emotional symptoms that cause pain, discomfort and distress. Because keeping the patient comfortable and pain-free is an important part of hospice care, many hospice programs have developed ways to measure how comfortable the patient is during the course of their stay in hospice. Hospice staff works with the patient’s physician to make sure that medication, therapies, and procedures are designed to achieve the goals outlined in the patient’s care plan. The care plan is reviewed frequently to make sure any changes and new goals are in the plan.