The Truth About Hospice Care
- Patients and Families
When you hear the word “hospice,” what’s the first thing that comes to mind? Is it compassion? A supportive team of caregivers? Peace, comfort and dignity? How about a chance to make the most of the time you have left with your loved ones?
That’s what families we’ve helped often tell us.
But if you’ve never used hospice care, the first thing you might assume is that it’s about giving up. While hospice care is designed for the final stages of life, choosing hospice does not mean you are giving up. The reality is that hospice offers patients and their families hope for relief from physical and emotional pain, and much-needed support during a very vulnerable time.
It’s OK, though. We get it. It’s still a common misconception that hospice means you or your loved one has just days to live.
A lot of people don’t realize that hospice care is available to anyone with a life expectancy of six months or less. Not only that, it’s usually covered 100% by insurance. Click here to read about the hospice Medicare benefit.
Another myth is that hospice care hastens death. It doesn’t. In fact, studies show that hospice patients may actually live longer than those who don’t use hospice care. But Hosparus Health’s main goal is to create more moments for our patients and their families during whatever time they have left.
The most publicized stories about hospice often feature courageous cancer patients, so you might be surprised to learn that less than half of our patients have a cancer diagnosis. Hosparus Health’s end-of-life care includes patients with heart and lung disease, Alzheimer’s/dementia, stroke and many other life-limiting illnesses.
Another concern many people have about choosing hospice care is that they have to stop seeing their regular doctors. We’re responsible only for care related to you or your loved one’s terminal disease, so we encourage you to stay involved with your other physicians.
You also don’t have to stop taking your usual medications. We’ll simply do a thorough review of all your medications to ensure they are still benefitting you and not causing any harm during this stage of life.
Finally, many people think you have to wait for your doctor to refer you to Hosparus Health. That’s not the case. Anyone – patients, loved ones or others involved in providing care – can make the first contact with us. We’ll follow up with you or your loved one’s physician to determine eligibility for hospice care.
Still have questions? Call us 24/7 to learn more about hospice services at 800-264-0521, or click here for further information.