A terminal diagnosis is a devastating blow to a patient. It’s also devastating for those who love them. In addition to providing care for their loved one, they have to work through the emotional impact of the diagnosis. It’s a lot to manage. This is why hospice care works to support families along with the patient.
How Hospice Helps Families
According to National Alliance for Caregiving and AARP, there are over 43 million family caregivers in the United States. Hospice care supplements the care they provide by bringing in a team of experienced end-of-life professionals to assist with nursing and personal care for their loved one.
Hospice care is committed to whole patient care. So in addition to nursing and personal care, social workers, bereavement specialists, and volunteers work together to meet the needs of the patient and their families.
Social workers assist families by connecting them to community resources and assisting them with applying for programs like Medicare, Medicaid and Veteran Administration benefits.
Assisting with making funeral arrangements and establishing advance directives are another example of how hospice helps families.
Chaplains also visit the patient and their family to address their spiritual needs.
Volunteers assist patients with companionship visits that brighten their days. These visits assist families by giving them a break so they can take a nap or run errands.
Bereavement specialists assist families with their grief leading up to the loss and in the weeks and months that follow. Crossroads Hospice & Palliative Care also offers complimentary bereavement support in all of the communities we serve – even if a family’s loved one did not receive care from Crossroads.
When Is it time for hospice?
Individuals are eligible to receive hospice care when they have been diagnosed with a terminal illness with a prognosis of six months or less to live if the disease progresses on its normal course. When a patient begins hospice care, their needs will be assessed and hospice care visits will begin.
In addition, hospice care helps families by providing all the medication, medical equipment and medical supplies at no cost to the patient or the family. This allows the family to spend more precious time with their loved one instead of worrying about filling prescriptions or picking up prescriptions.
Crossroads also takes pride in providing special quality of life programs as another way to help families who have a loved one needing hospice care. To learn more about hospice care and how hospice helps families, please call us at 1-888-564-3405.
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