Hospice care is designed primarily to help make end of life needs easier to meet. Generally speaking, this care is reserved for the final six weeks of someone’s life, but there are always exceptions. Each individual is unique and has different goals, needs, and desires for this time in their life. Family opinions often can influence when and how this care is implemented.
In short, hospice care is designed to help a senior live out their last days with less pain and worry. It is very similar to palliative care in this nature because one of the main focuses is to help make the person in need more comfortable. This is a tough time for many individuals and it involves more than just easing physical pain. Spiritual needs may also play a large role in hospice care. Many hospice care homes have a licensed member of the clergy on hand for this reason.
Hospice care and end of life medical needs are often overlooked. Take the situation our country is facing right now with the coronavirus as an example. Recent stimulus packages have focused on helping businesses and improving access to testing, contact tracing, and vaccines. While much of this is sorely needed, senior care in general has been widely overlooked. While certain aspects have received a lot of attention, others have not. There’s a lot more to helping senior care facilities than ensuring that the virus is not spreading within them.
Just because we are in the middle of a pandemic does not mean that the need for senior care has gone away. In fact, the need is much greater than ever before. And because people are not leaving the house as much and because less social interactions are occurring now, that need is going unmet in many areas. Hospice care and the companies that provide this service are on the decline. This is an unfortunate reality that a lot of places are facing. Awareness of the issue alone won’t fix it, but it may help guide the people that need these services toward them.
If you have a loved one that needs end of life assistance, please know that you have several options in front of you. If a traditional hospice care home is not what you’re looking for as a family, this doesn’t need to be your only choice. In-home hospice is also available in many parts of the country. This has grown in popularity during the pandemic.
You and your family are unique. You might have different needs and goals when it comes to care than others do. And that’s a good thing. You owe it to your family to meet those needs in the way that will work best for them. Hospice care can be customized to accomplish this.
This can be a scary time. But whatever is happening, know that you’re not in this alone. There are agencies, services, and individuals in your community that can help. Reach out to start this process and ensure that your loved ones are getting the best care possible.