The goal of hospice is to minimize the pain and discomfort, and maintain or improve quality of life of someone with a terminal illness — while offering guidance and support to patients and family members. The typical hospice patient has a life expectancy of six months or less, with most receiving care at home.
When faced with a terminal illness, many patients and family members tend to dwell on the impending loss of life rather than making the most of the life that remains. Hospice helps patients reclaim the spirit of life. It helps them understand that even though death can lead to sadness, anger and pain, it can also lead to opportunities for reminiscing, laughter, reunion and hope that hospice will enable a person to live life to the fullest.
- Hospice care for all ages, including children
- Inpatient and respite services at three hospitals
- Delivery of medication, medical supplies and medical equipment to patient homes
- Care in nursing homes and assisted-living facilities
- Home care and support provided by a team of specially trained registered nurses, caregivers, physicians, social workers and volunteers
- Pain control
- Symptom management
- On-call nurses and social workers available 24 hours a day/7 days a week
- Home health aides to assist with bathing and other personal care needs
- Home visits by social workers to provide counseling and assistance
- Spiritual support that is respectful of personal faith and beliefs
- Physicians who make home visits
- Grief support for family members and loved ones
- Support for the entire family
- Pet therapy
Medicare and Medicaid cover 100% of hospice costs. For those ineligible for these programs, most insurance plans, HMOs and managed care plans cover hospice care. Hospice will provide services whether a patient can pay or not. All hospice visits and hospice diagnosis based medicines and equipment are covered as part of hospice services.
Family members, friends, clergy or other health professionals may refer patients to hospice. Referrals are accepted 24 hours a day, seven days a week by call 706.509.3200 or 800.324.1078.