Hospice Care: When Should It Begin?

Hospice care was developed as a care solution for terminally ill patients.  Usually family members are involved in care services when a senior or someone younger is terminally ill.  Medicare does provide for hospice care services for seniors and provides certified nursing aide caregivers, social workers and registered nurses to visit the home to assist with the senior's care needs.  Family caregivers often do not realize Medicare will pay for hospice care services for seniors to help support them.  Yet the support of hospice can make a difficult situation a little easier to manage.

Hospice will also assist with the emotional aspects of terminal illness for both the senior and their family and for professional caregivers, along with bereavement care. In addition, hospice will provide a Certified Nursing Aide to assist with tasks such as bathing.  My grandmother moved in with my Aunt when she became terminal with cancer.  While my Aunt wanted to provide for her care, it was exhausting.  She appreciated the regular check -in visits by the hospice staff.  The hospice Certified Nursing Aide assisted her with bathing assistance visits and the Registered Nurse gave her feedback on the progression of the cancer.

Hospice care may begin as soon as someone is diagnosed as terminally ill.  There are many companies which provide hospice care and your medical doctor can usually provide a referral.

Learn more about hospice care services directly from the hospice foundation.  http://www.hospicefoundation.org/


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Comments (3) -

  • Renee

    10/16/2008 1:21:15 PM | Reply

    It takes a special person to be drawn to hospice caregiving. In fact, although I've heard some random horror stories about Nursing Homes, I've never heard anything except positive feedback about hospice care. My advice? Don't delay! If someone you love can make use of hospice care, sign them up.

  • Mary

    11/1/2008 9:53:15 PM | Reply

    As a hospice caregiver of seven years, I can say that it has been the most rewarding job of my life. The
    sad thing is that most people wait so long to bring us in. The reason is that often it is an admission of
    the approach to the end of life. People tend to want to stay away from hospice as long as possible.
    Some hospices will start care while someone is in treatment of some sort while others go by the six month to live rule. Most people who bring us in say in the end they wish they had started it sooner.
    It is an honor and a priviledge to go into people`s homes at that time in their lives. They can change you forever as you can them.

  • Tracy Bodnar CCA

    12/25/2008 5:48:05 AM | Reply

    As a hospice caregiver taking care of the terminally ill is one of the best things that I could have ever done for myself.as a live in, you see things that other people cant imagine, you have a special bond with those who are at the end of life, and people are not educated enough about hospice and what we can offer the families.
    I have done this type of work for 18 years and wouldnt trade it in for anything.so, my advice to anyone when you have a love one who is terminal,first things first, call your local hospice service through your local hospital and they will usual be at your house within a few days, plan what is it that you are wanting for your love one, my expirences is keeping them at home as long as possible. it is so much more peaceful having them at home verses a nursing home.
    you will be at peace with your choice and you will be glad that you did!
    an angel with hospice (caregiver)


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