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Hospice 101

by Stephanie Kostizen, MSW | Dec 28, 2022

When facing a life-limiting illness, comfort and quality of life are often the most important goals. The mission of hospice care is to provide aggressive symptom management and comfort care to ensure the best quality of life possible.

When someone signs up for hospice services, they are surrounded by care from multiple disciplines, for both them and their families.

Multi-discipline team approach 

  • Hospice providers are skilled in symptom management to ensure comfort.
  • Nurses provide 24-hour support to manage symptoms that may arise anytime during the day or at night. This care helps to prevent trips to the emergency room by bringing in the same level of care to the home.
  • Social workers provide routine visits to provide emotional support to both those in hospice care  and their families as well as assist with securing resources to improve care and address caregiver fatigue.
  • Spiritual care coordinators provide routine spiritual care and assist with engaging faith communities in care.
  • Home health aids provide help in the home with bathing and personal care.
  • Bereavement care coordinators provide grief counseling to families for 13 months following the death of their loved one. This care and attention is provided through letters, phone calls, and individual or group meetings based on personal needs.
  • Volunteers are specially trained to provide companionship and assistance to those with serious illness.

Understanding hospice care and support

  • Medication delivery and management: medications are delivered to the home and nurses assist with educating family caregivers on administering drugs.
  • Durable medical equipment (DME): equipment available to increase quality of life, which can be delivered to the home for use, including a hospital bed, bedside table, bedside commode, oxygen concentrators, wheelchairs, and walkers.
  • Pet Peace of Mind: this program helps those in hospice care ensure that their four-legged loved ones get the care they need. This program also assists with planning for rehoming pets after their person dies.
  • Veteran support: Caring Circle is a Level 5 Partner in the We Honor Veterans program, which pays tribute to veterans in hospice care. This designation means we are skilled in care related to military service conditions. We assist securing Veteran Affairs benefits to improve support for our veteran patients and their families.
  • Inpatient hospice residence: the Merlin and Carolyn Hanson Hospice Center provides a 16-bed facility specifically designed to care for those approaching the end of life. Routine placement, respite care for caregivers, or hospital level care support due to the need for aggressive symptom management are all available.

In most cases, all support listed is covered 100 percent by the Medicare hospice benefit, Medicaid, or private insurance. Referrals for hospice services can be made by medical providers, family, or the person with serious illness themselves. For more information on hospice care, call 269.429.7100.

Dec 28, 2022 Reporting from Niles, MI
Hospice 101
https://www.spectrumhealthlakeland.org/health-wellness/ask-the-experts/ask-the-experts/2022/12/28/hospice-101
Dec 28, 2022
When facing a life-limiting illness, comfort and quality of life are often the most important goals. The mission of hospice care is to provide aggressive symptom management and comfort care to ensure the best quality of life possible.When someone signs up for hospice services, they are surrounded by

Hospice 101

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