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National Hospice and Palliative Care Month

Hospital news | Monday, November 21, 2016

Contact: Mardi Ford

PHOTO CAPTION: Julie Parks, RN, the Manager of GRH Home Care Services since 2005, is passionate about the special needs of families facing a life-limiting prognosis and offers a team of compassionate experts to help navigate the last months of life. GRH Home Care Services is the only not-for-profit Home Health & Hospice agency in the county

November is National Hospice and Palliative Care Month – a time to draw attention to and raise awareness of this special kind of care.

Making a Difference

A hospice nurse was recently asked, “How can you work in hospice – it must be so sad!”
What many people don’t realize is that for those of us who work in the field, hospice is about life. We help our patients live as fully as possible, for as long as possible. So the hospice nurse’s answer to the question was unexpected.

“I know I will make a huge difference in the quality of a person’s life,” she said “I love that I can use my training as a nurse to bring comfort and dignity to my patients while seeing the relief on their faces; and on the faces of the family and friends who care for them. I love offering practical solutions to patient and family concerns. I love helping them find meaningful moments at the end of life.”

Talk Now about Hospice and End of Life Options

It’s an all too common situation. A family is at the bedside of a loved one who is seriously ill and nearing the end of life. Each member of the family has a different idea of what should be done and what the patient would have wanted.

Far too many people wait until they are in the midst of a health care crisis before thinking about what options are available or what care they or their loved ones would have wanted. Many people only consider hospice care in the final days of life, but hospice is ideally suited to care for patients and family caregivers for the final months of life to receive the best of what hospice offers.

Often, by waiting too long to learn about possible options like hospice care, people end up spending difficult days in the hospital or the emergency room and opportunities to be with loved ones at home are lost.

Understanding Hospice Care

When a family is coping with a serious illness and a cure is no longer possible, hospice helps provide what most people say they want at the end of life: comfort and dignity. Hospice care is considered to be the model for high-quality, compassionate care for people with a life-limiting illness. Hospice care provides the spectrum of expert medical care, pain and symptom management, emotional and spiritual support. Care is provided by an inter-disciplinary team of professionals and trained volunteers. The wishes of the patient and family are always at the center of care.

Most hospice care is provided in the home – where the majority of Americans have said they would want to be at this time. Care is also provided in nursing homes, assisted living facilities and foster homes, where ever the patient considers home. Care is paid for by Medicare, Medicaid, most private insurance plans and HMOs.

Choosing Hospice Care

Our hospice providers will provide information about care options and choices and ensure you live as fully as possible throughout your entire life. They will make sure your loved ones receive support as well. Since 1987, we have cared for the families of Union County, providing skilled, compassionate care at a time when it is most needed. Call us to learn more. We’re here when you need us most.