What exactly does "palliative care" mean? Does hospice care require that a patient be terminal? Who qualifies for this type of care?
Tags: hospice, palliative care
Hospice & Palliative Care
2/16/2010 10:40:12 AM #
When curing a serious illness is no longer possible, many people choose to stop curative treatment and accept palliative care. Palliative care means emphasis is placed on comfort and control of symptoms. It is not intended to prolong life.
Hospice Care is provided primarily in the home, nursing home, or in an assisted living facility. The Hospice Team assists family members in caring for their loved one in the comfortable and familiar surroundings of their own home whenever possible. Occasionally, short inpatient stays may become necessary for symptom management or during a medical crisis.
Hospice not only focuses on the special needs of the patient, but also provides support to the families. With a team of medical professionals, Hospice strives to meet the physical, emotional, social, and spiritual needs of both the family and the patient.
Hospice recognizes that everyone is a unique individual. With the expert guidance and counseling of a Hospice Team, patients and families can make their own decisions about what is important to them. Hospice respects the decisions of the family and helps to create an atmosphere of understanding and acceptance.
Also read "Frequently Asked Questions about Hospice":
Answer by: Bonnie Holland RN, ED, Executive Director Trinity Hospice
2/16/2010 10:41:21 AM #
Palliative Care is provided from the Home Health portion of medicare. It is a level of care that helps with pain and provides comfort. but also allows the patient to recieve aggressive treatment. Palliative care, like home care is "short term".
Hospice care is a separate medicare benefit not part of the home care benefit. Hospice is for those who are terminally ill, which is determined by their physician, who must write an order for hospice prior to admission. Hospice care is for those not seeking aggressive/curative treatment, who wish to spend the remainder of their time free of pain and in the comfort of wherever "home" may be.
Answer by: Shelly Stroh, Gateway Hospice
More Info on Gateway Hospice:
2/16/2010 10:42:23 AM #
Palliative Care is for patients who choose to continue aggressive treatment (chemo therapy/radition, blood transfusions etc.) in a hospital or out patient setting. Hospice on the other hand is when the patient chooses to stop the aggressive treatment and controll their symptoms with pain management.
Answer by: Laura Sokolovic, Three Rivers Hospice
2/16/2010 10:43:39 AM #
What is palliative care?
You may have heard of a new medical term - palliative care (pronounced PAH-LEE-UH-TIVE). For the last thirty years, palliative care has been provided by hospice programs for dying Americans. Currently these programs serve more than 1.2 million patients and their families each year. Now this very same approach to care is being used by other healthcare providers, including teams in hospitals, nursing facilities and home health agencies in combination with other medical treatments to help people who are seriously ill.
To palliate means to make comfortable by treating a person's symptoms from an illness. Hospice and palliative care both focus on helping a person be comfortable by addressing issues causing physical or emotional pain, or suffering. Hospice and other palliative care providers have teams of people working together to provide care. The goals of palliative care are to improve the quality of a seriously ill person's life and to support that person and their family during and after treatment.
Hospice focuses on relieving symptoms and supporting patients with a life expectancy of months not years, and their families. However, palliative care may be given at any time during a person's illness, from diagnosis on. Most hospices have a set of defined services, team members and rules and regulations. Some hospices provide palliative care as a separate program or service, which can be very confusing. The list of questions below provides answers to common questions about the difference between hospice and palliative care.
Who can receive hospice?
To receive hospice, physicians must be willing to state that death can be expected within 6 months if the disease follows its normal course. This does not mean that care will only be provided for 6 months; hospice can be provided as long as the person's physician and hospice team certifies that their condition remains life limiting.
Considered to be the model for quality, compassionate care for people facing a life-limiting illness or injury, hospice and palliative care involve a team-oriented approach to expert medical care, pain management, and emotional and spiritual support expressly tailored to the person's needs and wishes. Support is provided to the person's loved ones as well.
The focus of hospice relies on the belief that each of us has the right to die pain-free and with dignity, and that our loved ones will receive the necessary support to allow us to do so.
* Hospice focuses on caring, not curing and, in most cases; care is provided in the person's home.
* Hospice care also is provided in freestanding hospice centers, hospitals, and nursing homes and other long-term care facilities.
* Hospice services are available to patients of any age, religion, race, or illness.
* Hospice care is covered under Medicare, Medicaid, most private insurance plans, HMOs, and other managed care organizations.
Submitted by: James Joyce, VITAS Hospice
Source: National Hospice and Palliative Care Organization's Caring Connections www.caringinfo.org
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