Hospice Care: The Myths and Truth in Plain Language
Although it’s a subject that few willingly discuss, everyone eventually dies. Pegasus is dedicated to health care, including your needs in your later years. Part of caring for you includes hospice care when necessary.
Myths surround hospice care. Some of the erroneous beliefs include:
- Going into hospice means all hope is gone
- It’s for cancer patients only
- It’s permanent – once you’re in hospice there’s no getting out
- Your family isn’t allowed to assist in your care
- Medical care is withheld
There is not a grain of truth in any of these statements.
You are a candidate for hospice care if you are terminally ill. Your doctor must certify your condition. He or she must also certify that you have a life expectancy of six months or less.
If you happen to live longer than six months, your doctor simply re-certifies you. Six months is an average life expectancy. You’ll receive care for as long as needed.
Hospice care does NOT mean you are hopeless. It means receiving medical care that’s focused on relieving your symptoms. You also receive whatever is needed to manage pain and keep you comfortable.
Hospice care is available for all conditions that are life-limiting. It is NOT reserved for cancer patients only. It is for any individual with an illness they won’t survive.
Regardless of how seriously ill you may be, there is always the possibility of recovery. Hospice care is NOT permanent, and you may return home. If your illness recurs, you may resume care without a penalty.
Families are NOT shut out while you’re in hospice care. They are encouraged to participate in your care. Your doctor is also encouraged to remain a part of your medical team.
Hospice professionals strive to keep you comfortable, rather than attempt to cure you. However, medical care is NOT withheld. Your care team will do everything that’s medically needed to provide the best possible quality of life for you.
Hospice is guided by the philosophy that you have the right to die in a dignified and pain-free manner. The hospice team will meet all your medical needs, including pain management. They also assist you with counseling to help cope with matters such as:
Grief and bereavement counseling is also offered.
Pegasus Home Health Care Professionals Are a Part of Hospice Care
Hospice is not a place. It is a way of providing care, and you can obtain it wherever you want. At least 70 percent of people receive hospice care in their own home.
As well as in-home care, hospice is provided in:
- Assisted living facilities
- Independent hospice centers
- Long-term care facilities
- Nursing homes
- VA facilities
If you’re most comfortable in the home of a relative, then that’s where hospice will be for you.
Hospice caregivers ensure that you receive any equipment or supplies that will keep you comfortable. At home or elsewhere, hospice is available 24/7.
Hospice care is available to anyone who needs it, regardless of:
The only criterion is a terminal illness that will cut your life short as it progresses.
People often believe that end-of-life care is too expensive. That’s another myth that can keep you from getting the care you deserve.
The cost of your care is covered by:
- Managed care organizations
- Medicare Advantage Plans
- Veterans Affairs
- Private insurance
The cost of hospice care is frequently calculated based on need rather than on your ability to pay.
Your care is provided by specialists, aides, and volunteers. It’s overseen by a medical director. You can choose either your personal doctor or the medical director to be the attending physician.
Your hospice team can include:
- Home health aides
- Social workers
- Your personal doctor
Professionals from Pegasus Home Health Care fill many of these roles.
Palliative and Respite Care
Two other types of care are often confused with hospice. These are:
Palliative care is very similar to hospice. You receive care from a team of professionals, which can include home health caregivers. Your symptoms are treated appropriately.
It differs from hospice in that you may not have a terminal illness. Or, if you are terminally ill, you may not have a shortened life expectancy. Palliative care, therefore, includes treatments and procedures that may offer a cure.
Respite care is designed to give family caregivers a break. You may receive respite care at:
- A healthcare facility, including hospice centers
- An adult day care center
- Your home
Home health care from Pegasus professionals is an easy way for your family to achieve a respite.
Regardless of your physical condition, you can rely on Pegasus Home Health Care for assistance. Our compassionate caregivers strive to help you remain as independent as possible. We’ll help you and your family get the most from your time.