Common misconceptions about hospice
Many families caring for a seriously ill loved one struggle alone
unnecessarily. They miss out on vital support services because they don’t
understand what hospice can provide.
- Home visits by a nurse to manage pain and other
- Home visits by a nursing assistant to bathe
your loved one and shampoo hair.
- Free prescriptions as needed for keeping your
relative comfortable and out of pain.
- A volunteer to come give family members a break
now and then.
- Access to a social worker to talk about
emotional worries or concerns.
Would these services
Perhaps it’s time to consider hospice.
Here are some common misconceptions.
is for someone in the last few days of life. Hospice is for the
last six months of life, with more
time available if it is needed. Ask the doctor if he or she would be surprised
if your loved one were to die in the next year. If the doctor says no, then
it’s time to consider hospice. (No one can predict for sure one way or the
means you are giving up. Hospice focuses on patient comfort and quality
of life. Although a “cure” is no longer the goal, research shows that
people getting “comfort care” often live longer than they would
doctor will call for hospice when it’s time. Doctors don’t like
to “scare” patients. And, understandably, they don’t like to give bad
news. Unless your relative has asked his or her doctor for candid feedback, the
doctor may avoid bringing up hospice until death is very near.
means you can no longer see your doctor. Your relative’s
existing doctor is still involved, collaborating with hospice in a team
approach to care.
is a place someone goes. Some hospices have facilities where patients
can move in. But the mainstay of hospice is service in the patient’s own home.
Medical professionals make “home visits” to the patient, wherever the
Hospice is only for people with cancer. Hospice is for people with any type of disease,
as long as the condition is incurable and in the advanced stage. This includes
people in late stages of chronic diseases such as dementia, heart disease, and
If your loved one has Medicare, 100% of hospice services are
covered provided he or she meets the eligibility requirements.
Would you like to explore this kind of support?
If so, give us a call at 301-593-5285 and let us help you determine if hospice is the right fit for your situation. As the Metro DC experts in aging, we at Debra Levy Eldercare Associates can explain the eligibility requirements and answer your questions so you can decide as a family. Let’s start the conversation.