Understanding Hospice

Most people do not want to consider the possibility that a family member will become terminally ill. However, many people encounter this type of situation at some point in life.

Nevertheless, they may know little about end-of-life care or the options that are available as a person nears death. They may be torn between the choice of allowing their loved one to live out the remainder of their days in a hospital setting or come home with hospice support. 

Here is a bit of information about hospice care to help you better understand what it offers.

What Does Hospice Care Include?

Hospice care includes a wide range of services to help ensure that the patient receives emotional, spiritual, and physical support as they near death. Additionally, care is offered for the emotional needs of the family. 

What Supplies Does Hospice Provide?

When hospice care is offered, the patient's medicines, supplies, and medical equipment are provided. Thus, if a patient requires a wheelchair, a special bed, or supplies for incontinence, the needed items are sent to the home where the patient is residing. 

Who Provides Hospice Care?

Hospice care is provided by a team of trained professionals, Members of the team may include a social worker, nurse, chaplain, hospice aides, and volunteer staff. 

Is Hospice Only for Certain Illnesses?

Many people associate hospice care with cancer. However, a person with a terminal illness may suffer from a number of diagnoses, including dementia, heart disease, and other life-limiting diseases. Hospice is not limited to cancer alone.

Does Hospice Require Your Home to Be Rearranged?

Hospice providers do make recommendations concerning the supplies and equipment that a loved one may need. However, depending on the current arrangement of your living space, few changes may be necessary, especially in the earlier stages following the patient's diagnosis. However, the changes needed to accommodate a hospice patient can vary widely based on the individual needs of the patient.

Do Loved Ones Pay for Hospice Out of Pocket?

In many cases, the loved ones of a hospice patient are not charged for hospice care. Instead, the expenses are often covered by insurance, such as private medical insurance, Medicare, or Medicaid. Some insurers may require the patient to pay a co-payment based on their specific plan. If no insurance is available, many hospice providers offer care through contributions from the community or charitable foundations.

To learn more about hospice, schedule a consultation with a hospice care provider in your local area.