Determining the best plan for your needs
Hospice is specialized care for those reaching the end of life. It is designed to provide support and comfort for the patient as well as the patient’s loved ones through a variety of services. To determine if hospice is right for you, there are many things to consider:
Diagnosis and prognosis
The patient’s doctor and the hospice medical director must certify that the patient has a life expectancy of six months or less if the disease progression were to run its normal course.
Diseases that typically bring about hospice care include:
- Heart Disease
- Lung Disease
- Kidney Disease
- Liver Disease
- Congestive Heart Failure
- Any illness for which there is no cure
Different care goal
Once a patient elects hospice, the type of care becomes palliative, relieving pain and maximizing comfort, as opposed to curative.
Studies have shown that patients who receive hospice care for 30 to 60 days gain greater benefit than those who are placed in hospice in their final days, for example, following a crisis. It is important to maintain open, honest communication with your family and medical team to discern the right time to transition to hospice.
Hospice care does not close the door to life; it opens the door to a higher quality of life with a terminal illness.