Hospice care is a type of specialized medical care that is focused on providing comfort and support to patients with a terminal illness or condition. The goal of hospice care is to improve the quality of life for patients and their families by managing symptoms, relieving pain, and addressing emotional and spiritual needs.
CNAs (Certified Nursing Assistants), also referred to as Home Health Aides, have been called the unsung heroes of hospice care. Their role, as part of the hospice team, is crucial. Under the supervision of a RN (Registered Nurse), CNAs and Home Health Aides provide daily care to enhance a patient’s daily life, wellness and dignity – which includes essential and basic tasks, such as:
While many hospice professionals focus on patients’ physical and psychological needs, spiritual care often rests with a highly skilled and compassionate member of the caregiving team: The chaplain.
As a hospice nurse, you know that you have a challenging and rewarding job. Helping people with quality care in the final stages of life is among the most important jobs of all. Not only can you support the person in need of care, but you can also provide comfort and happiness to friends and family members.
In hospice care, patients and their loves ones are often aware the end is near, but it does not make it any less difficult for family members to accept. Many friends and family, even nurses and caregivers, are afraid of saying the wrong thing. They do not want to make a bad impression or seem insensitive. However, the most important thing to remember is to be yourself. The end may be near, so now is the time to show how much you care.
Mindfulness, the act of focusing on being in the present, is sometimes thought of as a type of meditation. Recent studies show that practicing Mindfulness can be an effective strategy for home health care providers, including hospice patients, caregivers, and volunteers. By shifting the focus of hospice care away from states of emotional, mental, or physical distress – it can help reduce pain and anxiety. A growing number of hospice organizations are beginning to integrate these exercises into patient care and caregiver support.
There are similarities and differences between hospice and palliative care services. Both are meant to provide comfort and relief, but they differ in important ways. This infographic helps to explain the differences.
Hospice volunteers are truly amazing people. Volunteers are an integral part of the interdisciplinary team of hospice professionals. Their job, once trained and ready to serve, can lead them in many different directions.
Understanding Hospice Care
Understanding hospice care can be difficult and confusing. One of the most important questions you can ask when faced with a serious or fatal illness, is how to care for that loved one. It is a question that should be taken seriously and only answered after much due diligence. One of the biggest mistakes family’s make is lack of preparation due to magnitude of the scenario. Remember, you are not alone, and there are options.
It is important to have a plan of action when dealing with a loved ones illness. How can you increase the quality of life? Who will be the primary caregiver? What are the expectant cost, and who will cover them? these are all valid questions, that should be planned for as soon as possible.
One of the first decisions, is who will be the main point of contact and speak for the loved one in care. This helps cut the confusion when others become involved and have questions themselves.
These decisions can be made more thoughtfully and with less stress if they are made when the loved one can make those decisions with you, so try to plan accordingly.
Know When Hospice Is Needed
There may or may not be a perfect time for hospice care. National averages show that hospice care is generally needed for about 20 days. Once again those 20 days are focused on quality of life.
It’s important to make the decision in a timely fashion, once you come to the conclusion the care is needed. If deciding when that time has come is difficult for you, then consider a few of these signs:
The health of the loved one is declining, symptoms of the illness are increasing thus reducing quality of life, your doctor recommends it is time for hospice.
Who To Discuss Hospice With
The first thing you will want to do is find a Hospice Specialist in Tucson or call Arista at 520-333-0333. You will walked through all of the options available to you and your loved one. Remember, not all hospice is the same, and you must always make a decision based on what’s best for your loved ones.
Approximately ninety percent of all hospice care in America occurs in homes. This statistic points to a couple of things. It highlights that not only is this type of care the norm, but that the demand for care is at an all-time high, as well.
One of the benefits of hospice care is that it can occur in just about any location. Hospitals and senior care facilities alike can work with this arrangement. Even so, people by and large prefer to receive this type of end-of-life care in the comfort of their own homes. It isn’t hard to understand why. At the same time, it is also important to appreciate just how substantial the need for home hospice care is right now. Furthermore, it’s a need that is likely to continue growing as time goes on.
The Demand for Home Hospice Care In America
The CDC reports that there are over 1.5 million hospice patients in America. A quick Google map search for hospice in Tucson displays over 40 providers in the local Tucson area, including in-home care services. Home hospice care can be realized in a variety of different ways. Hospice care is designed to provide support for not only the individual, but for the family and even friends of that individual, as well. However, the main purpose of hospice care is to make things as comfortable and manageable for the individual as possible, once that individual has accepted that death is near and inevitable. Hospice care is not inherently designed to treat the condition, whatever the condition may be. At the same time, treatments can be used in the name of keeping the patient comfortable. Everything about hospice care is designed around keeping the patient as comfortable as possible.
This is perhaps why so many people prefer to receive hospice care in their own homes. None of us like the thought of dying in a rest home or hospital. If we can enjoy our remaining time surrounded by familiar things and faces, we can come to terms with everything that might be going on. The concept of home hospice care can be beneficial to the families and friends of the individual, as well. It can help everyone to accept an unfortunate eventuality.
Home hospice care isn’t generally a 24-hour service, although it can be. It can include physical and psychological efforts to keep the patient comfortable. It often involves working with more than just that individual. This is challenging work that allows care workers to service the community in a unique way. As the baby boomers get older, the demand for home hospice care in America is only going to increase.
Click here for more info about Tucson hospice care.