Understanding Hospice Care
As our life expectancy continues to rise, the care needed for baby boomers and beyond has dramatically increased. Technology has made it easier to organize, but nobody can ever replace the human touch.
Farlex Partner’s Medical Dictionary defines Hospice as an institution that provides a centralized program of palliative and supportive services to dying people and their families, in the form of physical, psychological, social, and spiritual care. Such services are provided by an interdisciplinary team of professionals and volunteers in the home and specialized inpatient settings — a definition of Hospice.
Before we answer the question, “when is the right time for hospice” first, let’s get an understanding of Hospice itself.
The Invention of Hospice
Cicely Saunders was an English Anglican nurse, social worker, physician, and writer who is best known for her role in the birth of the hospice movement in the 1960s. Dr. Saunders became a physician in 1957. After eleven years of thinking about the project, researching pain control, serving cancer patients, and dealing with the death of her father, Ms. Saunders started St. Christopher Hospice in 1967. Located in Sydenham, England, it was the world’s first purpose-built Hospice, which emphasized the importance of palliative care in modern medicine.
The Hospice was founded on the principles of combining teaching and clinical research, expert pain and symptom relief with holistic care to meet the physical, social, psychological, and spiritual needs of its patients and their family and friends. It was a place where patients could garden, write, talk – and get their hair done. “As the body becomes weaker, so the spirit becomes stronger” – Dame Cicely Saunders.
The Growth of Hospice
According to the National Hospice and Palliative Care Organization, hospice care is growing. Since 1982 an estimated 25,000 patients were in hospice care. This number increased to over 1.55 million patients by 2018, with a 4% average yearly increase. This data proves that families and friends are becoming more informed about making their loved ones, approaching death, comfortable in their last days. Hospice is not just for the dying; it is just as crucial for the living as they receive the coping skills, information, and support they need during this challenging time. Here are some statistics on patients served.
When It’s Time for Hospice Care, Staying in Touch Means Everything
Hospice care is usually based on a prognosis of six months or less to live and with a physician’s recommendation. Every moment matters, and giving your loved one’s quality care and quality of life matters most. Needless to say, reaching the family member in Hospice care and their medical personal at any time of day and night becomes one of the most critical aspects.
With a wide range of services such as caregivers, nurses, medical equipment specialists, bereavement support services for both children and adults hospice, a 24-hour medical answering service can help to keep communication lines always open. It allows family, friends, and patients a direct line to emergency personnel when they need it most.
To find out more about the medical answering service provided by Answering365, including the bilingual services, and for a free consultation, please call us at 888-588-9800. We are always here for you!