what is hospice care

Hospice care is a program for individuals with a life expectancy of six months or less to live, based on the natural course of their disease.

Hospice care is provided to people in private homes, nursing homes, assisted living communities, or residential care facilities for the elderly. The hospice team includes a nurse (RN or LPN), aide, doctor, chaplain, social worker, volunteer, bereavement counselor, and other specialists who can help. They work together with family, and other caregivers, to ensure a quality end of life.

Understanding Hospice Care

The hospice team can offer pain management, nutritional services, emotional counseling, and spiritual counseling for the patient and family. Hospice care can be delivered wherever the patient lives… at home, in a nursing home, in a high-rise apartment, or even in an assisted living facility. Our goal is to provide high-quality end-of-life care for you or your loved ones, based on your wishes and needs.

How Difficult Is Hospice Care?

We have found that the most difficult part of hospice is making the initial decision to accept the services. We have had many families tell us, “we should have done this sooner.” Medicare surveys show that almost 80% of caregivers recommend their hospice experience to others.

There will be both happy and sad days. It’s good to know that you’re not the only one who feels this way. The hospice team is there for you every step of the way.

For those caregivers taking care of the loved one at home, the hospice benefit will pay for a respite stay for the patient. It includes transportation and up to five days of inpatient care at a nursing home or hospital.

What are the Benefits of Hospice Care?

Here are the top ten hospice benefits and reasons why it may be a good option for your loved one:

  1. Hospice care is delivered in a familiar and comforting atmosphere. The vast majority of our hospice patients have indicated a desire to remain at home, where they feel safe and nostalgic.
  2. Your cherished one is in the best hands. When you hire hospice services, including certified nursing assistants, your loved one will be cared for by industry specialists who have committed their professions to care for terminally ill patients and smoothing the end-of-life transition.
  3. It is pretty convenient for your loved one. Traveling might become increasingly challenging as your loved one approaches old age. All caregiver services required by your loved ones are provided right at the bedside. 
  4. Throughout end-of-life care, your loved one’s wishes are honored. The hospice healthcare professionals’ overarching purpose is to ensure that your loved one can experience this cycle on his or her own terms.
  5. Your loved one’s care is personalized and tailored to his or her specific needs. Each patient is unique and different, and each care plan is made carefully with the patient and his or her family’s input to embrace the entire person.
  6. Your family member is the lone patient in the room. When you choose home hospice services, there are no call lights, interruptions, or long delays for assistance. Quality Life services have competitive pricing for personal care and offer short-stay programs that are rare to find elsewhere.
  7. Your loved one spends his or her final days with dignity. There are no beepers, loudspeakers, or pagers. Patients who want to spend their last days at home can die naturally and painlessly.
  8. Family members have a place to stay 24 hours a day, seven days a week. When your loved one is at home, visitors have considerably more freedom to cook meals, get comfortable, and stay as long as possible.
  9. Family members receive the therapy, training, and support they require. Hospice caregivers are concerned not just with the patient but also with those who love and support them.
  10. It is less expensive than long-term hospital stays. Long-term hospital stays can easily cost tens of thousands of dollars, but in-home hospice care is significantly less costly. Many families find that hospice alleviates the financial strain of end-of-life care.

Bottom Line

Families whose patients received hospice care are happier with their end-of-life treatment than those who did not. In addition, compared to persons who do not receive hospice care, hospice recipients are more likely to have their pain controlled and are less likely to have unnecessary tests or medications administered to them. At Quality Life Services/ Three Rivers Hospice, we pride ourselves on being the regional leader in Western Pennsylvania for quality nursing care and hospice providers. Contact us now!