When is it Time?

When is it Time to Call?

Hospice care is for people with a life-limiting illness for which there is no cure. The focus is on comfort and quality of life rather than treatment. So each person must decide whether and when hospice is the right path.

Maybe treatment isn't working. Maybe emergency room visits and hospitalizations have become too frequent and overwhelming. Maybe pain relief has become the top priority. Maybe the family caregiver is worn down and can't do it alone anymore. Talk with your doctor or health care provider about hospice care.

However, you don’t need a doctor’s referral to contact us. Call us and if hospice is the right choice for you we’ll arrange for the physician’s order approving Hospice care so we can begin to care for you or your loved one as soon as possible.

Because Hospice is really intended to address all the needs of the patient and family for the last stages of an illness, not just the last hours, days or weeks of life. Early admission to hospice will provide many benefits to both the patient and the family.

Signs to watch For

Has The Person:

  • Been hospitalized or taken to the emergency room several times during the past 6 months?
  • Been unable to sit up without support?
  • Been speaking in 6 words or less with no meaningful communication?
  • Been incontinent of bowels and/or bladder?
  • Been taking medication to lessen physical pain?
  • Been spending most of the day in a chair or bed?
  • Fallen several times over the past six months?
  • Needing help from others for bathing, cooking, eating, dressing, getting out of bed or walking?
  • Experienced noticeable weight loss?
  • Started feeling weaker or more tired?
  • Noticed shortness of breath, even while resting?

A yes to four or more of these questions demonstrates the likelihood the patient qualifies medically for hospice services.

Often times the need for hospice care goes unnoticed, especially by caregivers who are too close to the patient to effectively observe and evaluate small symptoms such as those listed above. When these symptoms or signs are combined with one another, they demonstrate an overall decline in health, and the patient should be evaluated by professional immediately.

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