Making the decision with your family to transition a loved one into hospice care can feel like a big step. This part of senior care involves important decision-making, and you probably have a lot of questions before beginning the process. For example, what is hospice care at home? You may also be wondering, when is it time to move a loved one into hospice care?
Hospice care isn’t always a permanent decision, and there are actually a few different options you and your family have when it comes to deciding what kind of care is best for your loved one. Here’s what you need to know to make an informed decision when transitioning a loved one into hospice care.
If your loved one is being treated for a terminal illness, there may come a time when you’re ready to focus on treating your loved one’s symptoms to make them more comfortable, rather than trying to cure or slow the disease. This is the correct time to transition into hospice care, or end-of-life care.
When a doctor gives your loved one six months or less to live, that’s when you should consider hospice care. It ensures quality of life by making your loved one’s time as comfortable and as easy as possible, even though they’re no longer being treated for their illness. If you’re looking to still have your loved one treated for their condition and have quality of life support, look into palliative care, instead.
You can decide to leave hospice care at any time if you’d like to resume treatment or if your loved one’s condition begins to improve. Leaving hospice care isn’t uncommon at all. Hospice care providers understand and respect your decision to restart treatment.
Hospice care can provide senior care such as pain management, solutions for shortness of breath or other symptoms related to their illness. You can choose from different options of care. For example, if you need a nurse to drop by every day, routine home care will be useful. If there’s an emergency, and your loved one needs someone there at your home at all times, continuous nursing is your best option. You can also look into general inpatient care and respite care, which aren’t in-home offerings, but can provide relief for seniors and caregivers.
There are many benefits of hospice care, such as support for you as the primary caregiver, like counseling and support with household errands and chores. Hospice care is meant to help you and your family during this difficult time.
Obviously, you want to ensure that your loved one is receiving the best senior care available. How do you vet companies that offer hospice care so you know if they’re legitimate? If they’re legitimate, how do you know if that care group is the best for your family? These are great questions and very understandable concerns.
The best way to find a care service provider is to do your research. You’ll want to verify that the program is certified, licensed and reviewed by federal and state governments. Once you find one that’s vetted, local, and offers the hospice care services you’re looking for, set up an appointment to ask questions about at-home hospice care.
This is a big decision. None of your questions are intrusive. The right care service will be able to easily and patiently answer your questions and address your concerns. Don’t be afraid to ask about how quickly someone on staff will be able to respond to a call if your loved one’s condition begins to decline. What does support for caregivers look like? How are volunteers and staff trained? Will insurance or Medicare cover any of the expenses? For an extensive list of questions you can ask, visit the Hospice Foundation of America’s website.
Fedelta is your go-to resource for in-home caregivers. Make sure to reach out to one of our experts to get your free consultation today.