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What Family Caregivers Need to Know about Hospice

How do family caregivers know when hospice care is right for their loved one? Many people don’t understand hospice and immediately reject considering it because they think it means giving up. But hospice care is not giving up. It is about changing focus to a different set of goals – goals that will provide comfort care and quality of life.

Hospice care is an inclusive approach to caring for people who are terminally ill and their families. Hospice provides a network of skilled professional who can provide medical services, pain management, personal care, emotional and spiritual support designed to meet each individual’s needs. Services provided include:

  • Physician services.
  • Regular home visits by registered and licensed practical nurses.
  • CNA’s to assist with activities of daily living, such as dressing and bathing.
  • Social Work and counseling services
  • Medical Equipment, such as hospital beds and oxygen.
  • Medical supplies such as bandages and catheters.
  • Pain management and symptom control.
  • Volunteer support to assist caregivers and family members.

Hospice services are almost always covered by Medicare, Medicaid or an individuals health insurance. In the cases where there is no health coverage many hospice programs will offer free services. To qualify, a doctor must diagnose that an individual has 6 months or less to live and the individual must certify that they don’t want to pursue a cure.  The doctor makes a referral to the hospice agency and they do an assessment of the patient’s needs and put together a care team. The patient, family and care team together create an appropriate care plan for everyone to follow.

Hospice agencies only provide limited care several hours a week. This is where Aspen Senior Care plays an important role. We provide non-medical care any time day or night and are there when hospice professionals can’t be. Aspen can help with personal care, medication reminders, comfort care and companionship for the client and support for family members. We work hand in hand with a number of great hospice agencies. 

Hands releasing a butterfly

At Aspen Senior Care we have caregivers trained to be Certified Hospice Companion Aides. This certification through the Senior’s Choice Network, along with Aspen’s specialized training for our caregivers, make us an excellent provider of hospice care for clients and their families. Some clients just need care at night, others just on weekends or during the evening hours. We are there anytime our clients need us.

Click here for more information on hospice.