Hospice Fear and Misconceptions

Author

Sangre de Cristo Community Care

Posted on

May 27, 2009

Book/Edition

Colorado - Southern Colorado

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Nearly one million Americans were served by hospice last year. Yet there are many myths about hospice that keep people from getting this compassionate care when they need it most.
Hospice is not just about those who are dying; its a comprehensive care that focuses on living as fully as possible, surrounded by loved ones, up until the end of life. The sooner hospice is involved, the better. Hospice offers many wonderful services to the patient and their family.
Hospice care is done by a team. Care plans are developed to control pain and symptoms; help with personal hygiene; counseling for the entire family; spiritual support; volunteer services, like sitting with patients so family can run errands; and bereavement programs after death. Here are a few misconceptions people have:
Patient must be close to death in order to be admitted.
A physician can recommend hospice care for a patient if the physician believes that the patient probably has six months or fewer to live. Hospice care can actually increase quantity and quality of life because of the attention to the well-being of the whole person-physical, mental, emotional and spiritual. Patients can live for years and still qualify for hospice!
Hospice is only available in the home setting.
Hospice services can be provided to patients in nursing homes, long term care and hospice house facilities. Having the hospice team visit the patient at a nursing home is an extra benefit for the patient. Sometimes home hospice patients temporarily go to a residential hospice to give caregivers a needed break or to get symptoms under better control.

Primary physicians are no longer involved in care.
Hospice encourages the primary physician to be part of the interdisciplinary team. Hospice supplements rather than replaces the physician. Hospice works with physicians to support patient needs.

Hospice only sees patients with a terminal cancer diagnosis.
Hospice is appropriate for any terminal diagnoses including cancer, AIDS, ALS, heart disease, respiratory and lung disease, heart disease and dementia.

Editors note: This article was submitted by Tarrah Hildreth at Sangre de Cristo Hospice. She can be reached at. 719-542-0032.

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Sangre de Cristo Community Care

Palliative Care 1920 Valley Drive, Pueblo, Colorado, 81008

Sangre de Cristo Community Care is your local expert in end-of-life care, providing services throughout Southern Colorado. Sangre de Cristo Community Care is a not-for-profit organization, offering care to everyone, regardless of one's ability to pay. Other programs include hospice, palliative care for individuals with serious illnesses; grief support, available to anyone in the community; caregiver assistance; volunteer; We Honor Veterans program and, others. The mission of Sangre de Cristo Community Care is to enhance the quality of life and to maintain the integrity of individuals and their families in need of supportive or end-of-life services by offering them symptom management, support, comfort, and compassion.

Sangre de Cristo Community Care

Support Groups & Services 1920 Valley Drive, Pueblo, Colorado, 81008

Sangre de Cristo Community Care is your local expert in end-of-life care, providing services throughout Southern Colorado. Sangre de Cristo Community Care is a not-for-profit organization, offering care to everyone, regardless of one's ability to pay. Other programs include hospice,  palliative care for individuals with serious illnesses; grief support, available to anyone in the community; caregiver assistance; volunteer; We Honor Veterans program and ,others. The mission of Sangre de Cristo Community Care is to enhance the quality of life and to maintain the integrity of individuals and their families in need of supportive or end-of-life services by offering them symptom management, support, comfort, and compassion.

Sangre de Cristo Community Care - Walsenburg

Palliative Care 615 Walsen Avenue, Walsenburg, Colorado, 81089

Sangre de Cristo Community Care is your local expert in end-of-life care, providing services throughout Southern Colorado. Sangre de Cristo Community Care is a not-for-profit organization, offering care to everyone, regardless of one's ability to pay. Other programs include hospice, palliative care for individuals with serious illnesses; grief support, available to anyone in the community; caregiver assistance; volunteer; We Honor Veterans program and, others. The mission of Sangre de Cristo Community Care is to enhance the quality of life and to maintain the integrity of individuals and their families in need of supportive or end-of-life services by offering them symptom management, support, comfort, and compassion.