Need to Know
What is Hospice?
Hospice is care that brings the focus to the time the patient has with their loved ones rather than curing the disease. We provide comfort, and we strive to increase the quality of life for the patients.
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)
Can patients receiving hospice care go to the hospital if they need to?
Yes, a hospice patient always has the choice of whether or not to go to the hospital.
Are patients required to sign a DNR to receive hospice care?
No, a patient can absolutely receive hospice without having signed a DNR. Hospice organizations cannot discriminate because of that, either.
Does the doctor have to suggest hospice care, or can the family initiate that conversation?
Patients can choose for us to meet with them and discuss hospice care at any time. However, we cannot provide hands-on care to a patient without an order from the patient’s doctor. We work hand-in-hand with each patient’s doctor to align the care accordingly.
Can those in assisted living facilities receive hospice care?
Yes, Hospice provides care wherever a patient lives, including assisted living facilities, skilled nursing facilities, and personal homes.
Isn’t hospice only for cancer patients?
No, the majority of hospice patients nationwide have other terminal illnesses that are not cancer.
At times like these, your loved ones will undoubtedly be faced with significant challenges. The entire process can be extremely emotional and confusing. We welcome and encourage the involvement of family and friends at every step along the way. Should questions arise or a clear explanation is required, we are here for you to answer and clarify.
Videos/informational sites/article links
Talking about Hospice
At Allied Hospice, we fully understand that conversations regarding hospice can be difficult. So, we have developed guidelines to help the conversation between you and your patient, resident or family member.
The Allied Hospice team is specially trained to talk to your patients and their families about hospice care. Feel free to contact us at any time, we can meet with you or your patients to discuss the benefits of hospice care.
Here are suggestions on how to begin the discussion of hospice care:
Hospice care not only helps with managing your symptoms, but, also helps you and your family with emotional and spiritual support.
Receiving hospice care may help you avoid frequent trips to the hospital.
If hospice is not for you, you can revoke the hospice benefit and go back onto Medicare or your regular insurance plan.
You don't have to be ready for hospice. In fact, hospice doesn't expect you to be ready. You just have to be eligible for the services which can increase the quality of your life.
One of the hospices we work with, Allied Hospice, does not require that you sign a DNR to receive hospice care.
You may be eligible through Medicare for services to help you cope with your terminal illness. May I have someone from hospice speak with you?
If you are eligible for hospice, you do not have to give up your comforting treatments as long as they are related to your terminal prognosis.
Many people think that hospice care is for the last few days of life, when in fact patients can receive it much earlier. In customer satisfaction surveys, many families said they wish they had known about hospice sooner.
You can see your own doctor.
Hospice care for the patient and the family can help make coping with terminal illness a little easier.
When Should I Refer?
It can be difficult to recognize when a loved one would benefit from hospice care. Some signs that may indicate eligibility are:
Unplanned weight loss
Excessive sleeping throughout the day for long periods
Multiple hospital visits/stays in the past six months
Excessive swelling of the legs and ankles, even when feet are propped up
Difficulty breathing, even at rest or with increased oxygen level
Weakness during activities of daily living
Frequent changes in medications
Pain that is poorly controlled
Loss of interest in activities
Not “bouncing back” after an illness
Not responding to current treatments or therapy
Loss of appetite
Wounds that aren’t healing
Cost of Hospice Care
Hospice care is 100% covered for some patients under Medicare, most state Medicaid plans and many private insurance plans. We will assist you in checking your benefit coverage and make sure you understand any potential out-of-pocket costs.