What was the last thing you searched for online? Why were you looking for it?
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Wow, this is an easy post. The last thing I searched through Google was Hospice. Makes sense doesn’t it after what happened here this morning.
Hospice is for patients that want to remain at home and who are dying within a short time. I am learning quickly that although Medicare governs Hospice, the group working within each area can be quite different.
You have firms that have loving people who really care about the patient as much as they do themselves. Even in one group, the shower gals, there are wonderful, take their time people who give patients showers. Then there are those others who want their paycheck. They rush into your home at the last-minute, rush the shower, leaving you, the care giver, wondering if they just sprayed water over the patient.
Hospice is a wonderful program. It keeps many patients out of nursing homes and in the comfort of their own bedrooms and beds. Family and friends always feel more comfortable visiting in a home setting, especially one they have visited in many times before. When you think of the cold nursing home room and the ever-changing staff and the lack of personal touch, most of us would prefer to die in our own familiar territory.
I guess what it boils down to is compatibility. Hospice, staff, patient, family and care givers all agreeing on the quality of care.
This is actually what Hospice is. My job is to get the best help for my brother that special heart to heart bonding and caring attitude. This is why I am looking else where. To me, when someone you love is dying, the waters should be calm, the voice low, the joy pure, and the best memories in the making, resulting in peace and tranquility.
What is Hospice?
- Hospice is a special concept of care designed to provide comfort and support to patients and their families when a life-limiting illness no longer responds to cure-oriented treatments.
- Hospice care neither prolongs life nor hastens death.
- Hospice staff and volunteers offer a specialized knowledge of medical care, including pain management.
- The goal of hospice care is to improve the quality of a patient’s last days by offering comfort and dignity.
- Hospice care is provided by a team-oriented group of specially trained professionals, volunteers and family members.
- Hospice addresses all symptoms of a disease, with a special emphasis on controlling a patient’s pain and discomfort.
- Hospice deals with the emotional, social and spiritual impact of the disease on the patient and the patient’s family and friends.
- Hospice offers a variety of bereavement and counseling services to families before and after a patient’s death.
The word “hospice” stems from the Latin word “hospitium” meaning guesthouse. It was originally used to describe a place of shelter for weary and sick travelers returning from religious pilgrimages. During the 1960’s, Dr. Cicely Saunders, a British physician began the modern hospice movement by establishing St. Christopher’s Hospice near London. St. Christopher’s organized a team approach to professional caregiving, and was the first program to use modern pain management techniques to compassionately care for the dying. The first hospice in the United States was established in New Haven, Connecticut in 1974.
There are more than 4,100 hospice programs in the U.S., Puerto Rico and Guam. The majority of hospice programs are Medicare-certified. In 2008, over 1.45 million individuals in the United States received hospice care*.
Hospice is not a place but a concept of care. Eighty percent of hospice care is provided in the patient’s home, family member’s home and in nursing homes. Inpatient hospice facilities are sometimes available to assist with caregiving.
- Physician services
- Nursing services
- Home health aides
- Medical equipment and supplies
- Medications for pain relief and symptom management
- Dietary counseling
- Continuous care during crisis periods
- Trained volunteers
- Physical and occupational therapy
- Speech therapy
- Respite care for the family
- Social work services
- Psychological and spiritual counseling for the individual
- Bereavement services for the family for a year after death