Did you know that 1.5 million Medicare beneficiaries receive hospice care annually? And that number is increasing with each passing year.
End-of-life care isn’t an easy subject for most of us to think about, but it is something that’s important to discuss with your loved ones. Many people don’t understand the many benefits of hospice care.
If you find yourself asking “What is hospice care?”, we’re here to help. Here are five facts to know about this special type of healthcare.
1. Hospice is Supportive Care
Rather than treating the underlying illness, hospice care focuses on supporting the patient through day-to-day life. Symptom control is the number one priority. By treating the symptoms of the disease, hospice caregivers make patients more comfortable so they can live their final days to the fullest.
A care plan is established for each patient by hospice professionals. This care plan is tailored to the needs of the patient and offers 24-hour support.
2. Hospice Helps with Daily Life Activities
Hospice is more than just healthcare. Care professionals help the patient with simple tasks like bathing, preparing food, doing laundry, and cleaning their home. They can also help family members learn how to do these activities so they can support their loved ones during difficult times.
3. Hospice Care Includes Emotional Support
It’s not uncommon for terminally ill patients to suffer from high levels of anxiety and even depression. Hospice care workers are specially trained to offer emotional support to those dealing with a terminal illness. They can even offer spiritual guidance if that is what the patient needs.
Hospice care workers are also a great source of companionship to the patient and their family members. They can provide some needed time off to family members who take on the brunt of the caregiving responsibilities.
4. You Can Receive Hospice Care in a Nursing Home
Most people believe that a loved one must be at home to receive hospice care, but that’s not true. If your family member lives in a nursing home, they too can receive hospice benefits.
Nursing home residents that opt for hospice care will receive regular visits from hospice nurses that are specially trained in end-of-life care. They’ll work with the nursing home staff to ensure that the care plan is working as it should and they’ll offer suggestions for therapy and other care procedures that can improve the resident’s quality of life.
5. Hospice is for the Entire Family
Hospice can be a benefit to the entire family, not just the patient. The hospice service will provide access to counselors during the illness and even after death, to help family members cope.
They’ll keep family members in the loop during the entire process and ensure that everyone’s wishes are respected. Daily meetings with hospice caregivers can offer family members hope and stress relief during these trying times.
What Is Hospice Care? It’s Your Choice
Hospice care is an excellent choice for those who are looking to live a more comfortable life during their final days. Talk to your loved ones about choosing hospice care when the time comes.
At St. William’s Living Center, we understand the difficulties surrounding end-of-life care decisions. Call us anytime to discuss hospice care options in Parkers Prairie.