The decision to start hospice care can be a difficult one since it means giving up on curative treatments for the patient’s terminal illness. However, it can benefit both patients and their loved ones significantly.
Hospice care is available to any terminally ill patient whose doctor states that they have less than six months to live, yet many families put off enrolling until the last days or weeks of their loved ones’ lives. Instead, read on to find out what to expect from Hospice Care in Thousand Oaks, California to assuage any fears about this valuable service and provide the best possible care to the terminally ill patient.
Patients and Their Families Are in Control
The most important thing to remember about hospice care is that it’s patients and their families that are in control of the services being received, not the organization. Patients can decide what level of pain control they want, for example, or whether they want visits from chaplains or other providers of spiritual guidance. Everyone on a hospice patient’s care team has received dedicated training in how to provide care without taking over.
Getting Set Up with Hospice
A patient can only be officially admitted into a program like Generation Hospice Care after admission orders are received from their physician. From there, the patient’s primary care doctor and the hospice physician will discuss their medical history, current symptoms, and life expectancy, then communicate with other members of the care team to come up with a comprehensive plan for how to move forward.
The patient will be assigned a nurse case manager who will visit one to three times per week and help with scheduling regular visits by other individual team members. Any necessary home medical equipment or palliative medications will be ordered and delivered at this time, as well. Patients and their families should receive ample information about what to expect from hospice care and how to manage symptoms as they continue to progress at this point, as well.
Care Team Members
Each hospice patient has a slightly different set of needs that must be met, which means no care team is exactly alike. However, all of them consist of some combination of:
- Home health aides
- Social workers
- Respite caregivers
- And others
Each of these professionals will arrive according to a predetermined schedule. However, on-call nurses are also available around the clock to answer questions or provide care.
How to Get Started
Choosing to sign up for hospice care near me can be difficult. Once patients and their loved ones arrive at this decision, they should speak with a physician about eligibility requirements and how to move forward with a dedicated hospice care organization.