What is Hospice Care?

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Hospice care is one of the greatest gifts any family can give to itself. It helps everyone involved in an elderly parent dying.

Hospice is not age-limited, of course. hospice care service It’s for everyone. It’s usually not an actual place –though there are more actual hospices being built. It’s a medical service which offers each dying person the chance to die in comfort, pain-free and with dignity. Hospice believes that dying is a time of vital and important living.

And, as a caregiver, I can absolutely back that up. Hospice organizations have a full range of staff — RNs, aides, home helpers, volunteers, social workers, chaplains. Their goal is to support the comfort of the patient, while guiding the family walking together with their dying elder.

All over the entire Unites States are many hospice organizations. You usually start by asking the patient’s doctor to recommend hospice. If the doctor is reluctant, ask the doctor to request an assessment from hospice itself. If the doctor is unwilling, then contact hospice directly. And hospice will contact the doctor.

Many are unwilling to face death. However, caregivers often know when things have changed, even if they can’t quite identify what they are. They feel death might be approaching.

Don’t be afraid to mention dying to the possibly dying person. I promise you, it won’t kill them. Today, we don’t really do the dying thing well. Not like our Victorian ancestors, when ladies wore black for a year. Black-edged stationary, even special black jet mourning jewelry. Yes, indeed, they did death well.

We, on the other hand, are often afraid to mention it. We’ll dance naked on YouTube — well, you will — but death is too embarrassing.

We condemn people to loneliness in their own dying. Most people who are dying really don’t mind admitting it. They’re even grateful and relieved. So stop being a big old baby about it and get the help the whole family needs to do this journey well.

Don’t worry about the cost of hospice. By Medicare law, hospice is not allowed to deny services to those who don’t have money. It’s covered by both Medicare and Medicaid, plus insurance companies and they’ll accept your cash if you have it. But, if you don’t, they’ll still gladly support you in this most important of all journeys.

Once you’ve been linked to hospice, they’ll take you through the rest. No-one has to guarantee to die, okay? There are technicalities of time. The official line is hospice gives services to people whose doctors estimate they have 6 months to live. But people can go on and off hospice according to how they’re doing, they can get re-certified for more services.

And that’s just rules and regulations. The bottom line. my friends, is that hospice is there for you and your family through the whole journey. They keep the patient comfortable, cared for with expertise in every way — psychological, physical, emotional, spiritual.