There may come a time when you decide that hospice care is the next step in aiding your loved one’s illness. However, it’s important to know the details of this type of medical care so that you can decide if it’s what your loved one needs.
What is Hospice Care?
Hospice care is medical care that helps to increase the quality of life in someone with a terminal illness. While it acknowledges that death is inevitable, it does not try to rush it or delay it; instead, it allows the patient to be at ease, treating the symptoms as opposed to the illness itself.
These symptoms are managed by a team of medical professionals who work together to come up with an individual plan for the patient to live their last days as fully as possible. The family is included in this plan, and hospice care allows the patient to be surrounded by loved ones during this time. It allows for the patient to remain at home, as well.
How Do I Know When it’s Time for Hospice Care?
Deciding on hospice care for your loved one may be difficult. Hospice care is used when treatment can no longer stabilize or cure a disease. Generally speaking, when a patient has 6 months or less to live, it’s time to consider hospice care.
This can be a lot for you and your family to accept, but it’s comforting to know that your loved one has the option to spend his or her final days in peace and dignity. While deciding on hospice care can be seen as losing hope, keep in mind that it’s better to allow your loved one to experience quality of life when their regular treatment stops working.
It’s also important to note that a patient can leave hospice care at any time. For example, if your loved one begins to show improvement, it’s possible that he or she could be moved back into treatment.
Hospice care provides patients with not just medical care, but spiritual, mental, and emotional care, as well. It provides occupational and physical therapy, along with medical equipment, such as wheelchairs or walkers.
Additionally, dietary counseling is provided, along with other services to specifically help manage symptoms. You and your loved ones will have the opportunity to receive grief counseling, as well. Helping you to cope with the potential loss of your loved one will allow you to be a part of their quality of life care.
While hospice care is usually set up in the home, there may be times when your loved one needs short-term inpatient care, which is another service provided by hospices. In this situation, your loved one would be temporarily transported to a local nursing home or hospice residential facility.
Is Hospice Care the Right Choice?
If you feel as though your loved one may need hospice care, our team at WellSprings Home Care can help. Contact us at (610) 467-3880 and one of our team members will be happy to answer any questions or concerns.