Research shows that many people with a loved one eligible for hospice do not seek care at all or wait until it is too late to truly benefit from this end-of-life support.
Approximately 1.5 million Americans receive hospice care each year with the goal being to improve their quality of life (and that of their families) when they have limited time left due to a terminal illness (typically six months or less).
Some of the reasons that families are reluctant to explore hospice include:
- Denial about the seriousness or immediacy of their loved one’s condition
- Inability to accurately predict the time a loved one has left
- Lack of understanding of what hospice care entails
What is hospice and the benefits of it?
Hospice refers to the end-of-life care that someone receives when medical treatments have proven ineffective and the focus shifts to comfort. Patients are cared for by specially trained healthcare professionals who are dedicated to assisting families during this sensitive and challenging time.
Blue Water Homecare and Hospice has an experienced team, led by founder and COO Jennifer Prescott, RN, MSN, CDP, who carry out comprehensive hospice care, privately in your home or at a facility. Care and services are personalized to meet the wide range of a family’s needs, from the physical to emotional.
“For our clients, we want to make sure they are as comfortable as possible in the most peaceful environment that we can help create for them,” says Jennifer Prescott. “In terms of their families’ needs, we can support them in a number of ways, from daily tasks like meal-prep and running errands to offering helpful guidance on planning end-of-life celebrations and processing their grief when the time comes.”
Families often find great benefit in hospice care because they have someone else who is trained and trusted to look after details like grooming and toileting, feeding, or providing safe ambulation and movement throughout the house to their loved one. This relieves some of the burden of serving as a constant caretaker and affording the opportunity to focus on quality time left spent with cherished conversation, favorite activities, or reflecting on special memories together.
When should you seek hospice care?
Knowing when it is right to enlist hospice care is different for every family.
Below are some helpful considerations that Blue Water recommends as you are weighing in on this important decision. Has your loved one:
- Experienced a rapid decline in health even with dedicated medical treatment?
- Visited the hospital or ER on multiple occasions with little improvement to their condition?
- Shown little interest in eating or drinking and lost a significant amount of weight recently?
- Withdrawn from social settings, family members, and friends?
- Expressed a strong desire for comfort and peace and an end to either their constant pain or the stress of ongoing medical efforts?
Blue Water can help families explore hospice care options. Our goal is to make the transition to hospice care as easy and comfortable as possible, and our team of skilled staff members are available to assist you 24/7.
In addition to our dedicated hospice care program, we offer extensive bereavement support to families in the 13 months following a loss to help navigate the stages of grief and carry out a loved one’s final wishes.
More facts about our hospice care can be found here.