What Nurses Want You to Know about Hospice Care
Each person on our hospice care team has a unique and essential role. Our nurses meet the medical needs of our patients. They provide medical care, address the patient’s symptoms, and educate the patient and their family.
They build beautiful relationships with our patients as they navigate their final months, weeks, and days. They also see firsthand some of the misconceptions people have about hospice care.
We asked a few of our Crossroads Hospice & Palliative Care nurses to share what they wish more people knew about hospice care.
Hospice Nurses on Hospice Care
“Often times, people wait too long to call hospice, fearing that it means that they are giving up or quitting on life, but that is not the case. Choosing hospice is about taking control and deciding how you want to live. Hospice allows you to navigate life’s journey on your own terms, surrounded by people that love and support you.”
Elizabeth Jackson, RN
“I wish people knew that electing hospice services is like electing a team of patient advocates. We work in this field because we have a passion for giving our patients the dignity, respect, and comfort that they deserve. We don't prolong or hasten time, we strive to give patients quality of life.”
Ricki Biro, RN
“I am an RN and have worked for Crossroads Hospice for almost 11 years. One of the biggest misconceptions about hospice care is that hospice is only utilized for pain control during the end of life. Although this is an important goal for hospice. there are many other reasons hospice care is important.
Hospice involves emotional, psychological and spiritual care. By having a team of individuals such as aides, nurses, social workers and chaplains, this allows not only the patient. but also the family to realize they are not alone during their journey.”
Sabrina Wilson, RN
“Hospice is a partnership between patient, family and a team. As an RN case manager, I am so grateful, when a family, or patient says, ‘I feel so much better after your visit.’ Hospice is devoted to making a hard time easier, with education, comfort, support and respect.”
Cynthia Troth, RN
“What we do in hospice is so unique to healthcare. It is exploring options to add comfort and controlling symptoms to enhance someone’s quality of life. So many people think hospice is about dying. While no one has made it out of this life alive, hospice is actually about living. The end of life deserves just as much (if not more) respect, effort, celebration, support, and dignity as the beginning of life. Hospice provides that. This specialty allows those of us privileged enough to do it an amazing opportunity to see all walks of life. Without judgement, we get to see some of life’s best moments (and sometimes the worst), yet every day is different. This allows us to not only help our patients but their families, too. Once this is understood, the professional team comes together to collaborate with the patient and their family, helping to ensure that quality.
“One thing that I wish I knew prior to hospice was how quality changes throughout a person’s life based on their own perceptions and experiences. As a nurse, I see many people who are frequently questioning the use of medications for comfort and symptom management; particularly, morphine, and I can see how the idea of morphine at the end of life can be scary. However, these medications simply take the workload off of the body, allowing the patient to rest and enhancing their comfort, not only internally but easing the distress families can have as they spend those last precious moments with their loved one. The goal of hospice and the medications used is not to speed any natural process up. but to add comfort to the body during the end of life processes. It is an honor and privilege to be a part of this stage of life.”
Jonell Butler-Kraus, RN
At Crossroads Hospice & Palliative Care, we appreciate the dedication and compassion of all of our hard-working nurses. To learn more about how hospice care works, please call 1-888-564-3405.