When and why you should consider hospice care
When you, or someone you care about, reach a point where you no longer desire or it is no longer possible to pursue curative treatment to prolong your life, then you may want to consider hospice care. This consideration does not mean you or your caregivers are giving up hope. Instead, it is a choice to help you make every day count and to live the best quality of life possible.
When to consider hospice care
Hospice care may be appropriate when you or someone you care about:
- Has been diagnosed with a life-limiting illness.
- Is experiencing pain.
- Desires to remain at home.
- Needs financial relief from medical care bills.
- Decides to forgo curative treatment.
- Has been told by a physician that further treatment would be futile or ineffective.
- Experiences frequent hospitalizations.
- Requires frequent telephone calls to medical professionals, doctor's office or emergency room visits.
The care you will receive
All certified hospice care providers must follow the same guidelines. When you, or someone you care about, are in hospice care you can expect:
- Professional pain management and relief for your physical, emotional and spiritual suffering.
- To live at home, wherever "home" is. This includes your personal home, a family member's or friend's home, nursing home, adult foster care home and assisted living facility.
- Significant financial relief. Medicare, Medicaid and most major Health Maintenance Organizations (HMOs), Preferred Provider Organizations (PPOs) and other private health insurance plans, such as Blue Cross Blue Shield, typically will cover your care. If you do not have hospice coverage, we will help you get the care you need.
- Home visits. This will minimize the need for you to make trips to the doctor's office or hospital emergency room.
- Telephone support 24 hours a day, seven days a week. You can talk with us whenever you have questions or concerns, need advice or reassurance or help in handling an emergency. We also will send expert assistance to your home when required so we can be by your family's side, supporting you and them, during this important life journey.
- Respite care so your caregivers can take a break to rejuvenate.
- Ongoing bereavement support for your family and friends. Your hospice team nurse will care for your body after you die and will be with your family when the funeral home arrives. The nurse or social worker can help your family make funeral arrangements and will frequently attend memorial or funeral services to provide emotional support. Hospice at Home will stay in touch with your family through monthly mailings and classes that help your loved ones cope with their grief. And family members and friends will be invited to Celebration of Life services where they can pay tribute to your life.
If you have further questions about hospice care, or any of our programs, we are happy to talk with you. Please call us at 269-429-7189 or 800-717-3811.
Weigh your options carefully before deciding whether or not hospice care is right for you.
Right now you have a lot going through your mind. It isn't easy to think clearly or sort out what is the best thing to do next. That's why we want to emphasize that hospice care is a choice. As the patient, you decide whether or not it is best for you. Or, as the caregiver, you can help the patient look at his or her options. Don't make a quick decision or feel pressured by anyone. Take time to read more about hospice on this website and the websites listed below. Research the different hospice care providers in your area. You will choose which organization you want to provide hospice care.
When I heard back from the Hospice after my doctor called, I have never felt so cared about. They listened, they heard me, and they knew what I was feeling.
To help you with your decision, interview more than one hospice care organization that services your area. Ask friends and family who have used hospice for their insights and experiences using hospice care. These websites can help you, too.
National Hospice Organization
The National Hospice and Palliative Care Organization (NHPCO) is the largest nonprofit membership organization representing hospice and palliative care programs and professionals in the United States. This website offers resources for medical professionals, patients and caregivers as well as help in finding providers.
Michigan Hospice and Palliative Care Organization
This organization lists names and phone numbers of local hospices.
If you decide hospice care will give you a higher quality of life and Hospice at Home is the right provider for your needs, we are ready to help you with the next step.