Myths about Hospice and Palliative Care
Did you know that the nation’s over 5,000 hospice providers served 1.6 million patients last year? Hospices help patients with life limiting illnesses and their family caregivers live as fully as possible until the end of life with dignity, comfort, and compassion. Hospice is a philosophy of care providing medical, emotional, and spiritual care, which focuses on comfort and quality of life. There is much CARE that can be given when a CURE is no longer possible. How many of these myths do you believe?
Six Myths About Hospice
- Myth: Choosing hospice means giving up all medical treatment.
Reality: Hospice places the patient and family at the center of the care-planning process. When the disease can not be cured treatment may be continued as palliative care and provides high-quality pain management and symptom control.
- Myth: Hospice is only for cancer patients.
Reality: Fifty percent of hospice patients are diagnosed with conditions other than cancer.
Myth: Hospice is only for the last few days of life.
Reality: Hospice patients and families can receive care for six months or longer, depending upon the course of illness. The earlier the person is referred, the more help the hospice team can be.
Myth: A Hospice patient can not go to a hospital or emergency room.
Reality: Of course they can!
Myth: Hospice is just for the elderly.
Reality: Hospice serves anyone facing a life-limiting illness, regardless of age.
Myth: When a patient dies, Hospice services cease.
Reality: Hospice offers grief and bereavement services to family members for thirteen months after death. Hospice Southeastern Connecticut also offers bereavement services free of charge to anyone in the community suffering a loss.
The best time to learn about hospice is before someone in your family is facing a health care crisis.