Who exactly will be providing care?Text
Hospice care takes a concerted effort of many professionals collaborating to make sure your wishes are met. These individuals include:
- Physicians — normally your attending physician and a hospice physician. They work together to manage your symptoms and your pain through prescriptions, care plans and other strategies.
- Nurses who meet with you and your family to gain a better understanding of your ongoing needs.
- Certified nursing assistants, including home health aides. They provide hands-on care and support, as well as help with the activities associated with daily life.
- Social workers, who help connect patients and family members with non-medical resources. Look to them to help with relationships, future planning and the emotional needs of both patients and their loved ones.
- Faith professionals who offer spiritual guidance and comfort.
- Bereavement coordinators that enable patients and loved ones to better cope with the grief associated with a life-ending illness. These services continue for family members, upon request, for up to 13 months beyond the passing of the patient.
- Volunteers who have undergone rigorous training and are equipped to provide companionship and support for both patients and family members alike.
Is “hospice” a place?Text
It’s more of a philosophy, or an approach to care that’s required in unique circumstances. Typically, care providers can visit a patient in his or her home (or that of a loved one). Hospice care can also happen in an assisted living facility or a nursing home.CLOSE
What about my current treatments?Text
Hospice care is a departure from curative treatments.
Though palliative care may be provided in conjunction with hospice care, typically patients have indicated that a cure is no longer an option and that their focus is now on maximizing their quality of life during their remaining time with friends and family.
Your doctor will be able to advise you on making this transition.CLOSE
What are the upsides of hospice?Text
The short answer: quality of life. For those with limited time remaining, hospice care enables them to focus on enjoying their friends and family during their final days. This is made possible with integrated clinical, emotional and spiritual support.CLOSE
How do I begin hospice care?Text
If you or a loved one is at the point where a cure is no longer an option, hospice may be for you. Talk to your doctor — and remember that a doctor’s referral is a requirement before hospice care can begin.CLOSE
Is hospice care the same as palliative care?Text
No, the two are different.
Hospice care focuses on comfort of the patient and their family during the last days of life — typically the final six months to a year. It is initiated only when curative treatments are not an option.
Palliative care focuses on reducing pain and stress, sometimes during a course of curative treatment. This care may transition to hospice care should the prognosis for cure change.
Palliative care, like hospice care, includes important conversations about final wishes and goals, including the completion of advance directives.CLOSE
Is hospice care covered by my insurance?Text
Hospice care is covered by Medicare and Medicaid, and most private plans cover it, too. This normally includes medical equipment and prescriptions. It’s important to work with a care team member to understand your coverage.CLOSE
Is hospice the same as home health?Text
Though Southwest Medical Hospice Care does happen in a private residence, it is not the same as home health.
A patient normally experiences home health care when they are recovering from a serious illness or accident. The course of treatment is normally not focused on end-of-life care.
Hospice, on the other hand, is specifically geared toward patients in their final days. The hospice care team provides clinical, emotional and spiritual support — including a focus on loved ones and caregivers.
If you’re part of Medicare, medical equipment, beds, medication and other medical supplies may be provided to support quality of life.
Note that home health may transition into hospice care, depending on the patient’s specific circumstance.CLOSE