Entering hospice care can be a difficult decision, but it can also be a very positive one. In fact, patients and loved ones often report that they wish they’d entered hospice sooner.
Hospice care can provide comfort and support to the patient and their family during the last stages of life, and it can help them to make the most of their remaining time together.
Benefits of Hospice Care
There are many benefits to hospice care, including:
Better Pain Management
Hospice care providers are experts in pain management, and they can help the patient find the best way to relieve pain and other symptoms. This can help improve the patient’s quality of life and make them more comfortable.
More Time With Loved Ones
Hospice care can help the patient spend less time on medical visits and hospital stays, and more time with loved ones. This can be especially important for patients who are facing a terminal illness, as they may want to make the most of their remaining time with their loved ones.
Hospice care providers offer emotional support to the patient and their family. This can help the patient and their family cope with the emotional challenges of facing death.
Most hospice care is covered by Medicare, and there are no out-of-pocket costs for the patient. This can be a significant financial benefit for patients and their families.
Why Is There Reluctance to Enter Hospice?
Despite the many benefits of hospice care, there is often a reluctance to enter it. This may be due to misconceptions about hospice, fear of giving up on treatment options, or not understanding what hospice truly offers.
Some people may also feel like entering hospice means accepting that they are at the end of their life, which can be a difficult realization. However, hospice care is not about giving up or losing hope. It is about improving the quality of life for both the patient and their loved ones.
Financial questions are another hurdle for some people, who fear that the cost will be prohibitive, because they do not realize that most hospice care is covered by Medicare.
Benefits of Not Delaying Hospice Care
Entering into hospice care requires that the patient meets certain conditions, one of which is that their remaining life expectancy is six months or less if their illness progresses at the normal rate. Once the conditions for hospice care met, though, patients are still often not referred to hospice care or do not seek it out. This can lead to time wasted and some value lost in enhancing the patient’s quality of life.
Entering hospice care early can also help the patient and their family to:
Make Decisions About End-of-Life Care
Hospice care providers are often better equipped to help the patient and their loved ones make decisions about end-of-life care than are other medical professionals whose role is to cure or suppress the progression of an illness.
Hospice professionals can provide resources for everything from making pain-management decisions to helping hospice patients deal with holidays. By entering hospice care soon after curative treatments are no longer working, patients can get more control over how they choose to live out their final days.
Plan for the Future
Hospice care providers can help the patient and their family plan for the future, such as making arrangements for funeral or burial services. Patients who have entered hospice care early are often better able to participate in the planning.
Focus on Patient Comfort
Because hospice providers are not focused on finding a cure or stopping the progression of an illness, they can focus on the whole patient more readily. Thus, a hospice team can include not just doctors and nurses, but also spiritual/religious advisors, music therapists, social workers, and anything else that enhances the patient’s quality of life.
This focus on comfort is truly one of the main reasons that patients wish they had started hospice sooner.
Is It Time To Consider Hospice?
If you are considering hospice care for yourself or a terminally ill loved one, it is important to talk to your doctor as soon as possible.
Here are some of the things you can do to prepare for hospice care:
- Talk to your doctor about your loved one’s condition and whether or not hospice care is right for them.
- Do some research on hospice care providers in your area.
- Talk to your loved one about their wishes for end-of-life care.
- Make a list of your loved one’s important belongings and who you would like to contact after they die.
- Start planning for funeral or burial arrangements.
Entering hospice care can be a difficult decision, but it can provide comfort and support to the patient and their family during the last stages of life, and it can help them to make the most of their remaining time together.
Las Vegas Hospice Care – Shining Light Hospice
It is important to remember that hospice care is not about giving up. It is about providing comfort and support to the patient and their family during the last stages of life.
If you are considering hospice care in and around Las Vegas, please reach out to us. Someone from our team of skilled hospice professionals will be happy to discuss your options, offer resources, and help you make the right decision.