Hospice is a Team of Health Care Professionals and Volunteers who can provide medical, emotional and spiritual care to individuals with life-limiting diagnoses, and to their family, friends and caregivers. The patient and family control “how much” or “how little” care is provided.
Service can be provided in several different settings, or in a combination – depending on the type of care wanted at a particular stage:
- In your home or Assisted Living Facility
- Skilled Nursing Facility
The emphasis is on comfort and empowerment, not cure. The patient and family are involved in every decision. Hospice requires someone at home to serve as primary caregiver. Typically a close family member is designated.
Hospice is flexible. Creative scheduling and flexible teams provide constant support. Skilled professionals are on-hand to offer 24-hour crisis care and support. Our renowned Vigil Watch services are available to support you and your family.
Like skilled home health, Hospice care is provided under a physician’s orders. A written plan of care is developed and revised as needed. Nurses and therapists can train family members to perform the daily hands-on care and make regular, scheduled visits.
The Hospice inter-disciplinary team (IDT) consist of the following:
- Medical Social Workers
- Physical, Occupational and Speech Therapists
- Home Care Aides
- Trained Volunteers
Most insurance plans cover these additional hospice benefits:
- Medications related to the life-limiting diagnosis, including drugs for pain relief and symptom management
- Medical supplies and equipment
- 24-hour-a-day, 7-day-a-week on-call assistance
- Homemaker services
- Up to 24 hours a day skilled nursing care in home or facility, in times of crisis
Other special services may include the following:
Family Conferences: The Family Team stays informed and the patient’s wishes are made clear. Emphasis is placed on what to expect in each phase of the illness and the eventual death process. Clear expectations and information go a long way to support the patient’s wishes and to relieve the stress of a life-limiting illness.
Advance Directives give the patient a voice in decisions when they are unconscious or become too ill to communicate. Directives may also be called “living wills” or “medical power of attorney.” They make the patient’s wishes clear to caregivers and family members.
Volunteers offer a variety of ways to help our hospice patients. Some of these include: light housekeeping, letter writing or telephoning friends and loved ones, reading to the individual or sharing a common interest. Volunteers can also delivery meals or medications.
Respite Care gives primary caregivers an opportunity to refresh and re-strengthen. The patient may temporarily enter a skilled nursing facility or hospital while family members travel to a special outing, a mini-vacation, or stay at home for a much-needed rest.
Our Make-a-Memory program is a mini-version of the nationally recognized Make-a-Wish program. Foundation funds have been used to support a variety of activities, including family reunions, fall color tours, or just a last summer visit to take a sauna at camp.
Click Here to read some examples of our Make-a-Memory Program
Bereavement Care: The hospice team provides support and grief counseling to family members for 13 months after death. Each family is different, and support can take several forms, including visits, telephone calls, and letters. Our hospice offers Memorial Ceremonies, a time to gather with other hospice families to celebrate the vibrant lives that have passed.