We are here to assist you with providing quality care with comfort and dignity, by a professionally trained staff available 24/7.
Guiding you through every step of your journey.
Hospice is a service, not a place. The hospice team comes to the patient’s home, whether that be in their private home, nursing home, assisted living facility, or hospice home, to provide this full umbrella of care. Covered by Medicare, Medicaid, and most private insurance companies, the hospice benefit includes all medications, medical equipment, and services required to treat the terminal diagnosis.
Hospice is for people with all diagnoses. While approximately 50% of hospice patients have some form of cancer, the other half have a wide variety of illnesses, including heart disease, lung disease, liver disease, ALS (Lou Gehrig’s Disease), dementia (including Alzheimer’s), and failure to thrive. Any condition to which the physician can state that in their best guess, this person has less than six months to live, would qualify for the care hospice provides.
Hospice is for families as well as patients. A vital component of hospice care is the support and education given to the families and caregivers who are caring for the person who is living with the terminal illness. The staff work closely with all members of the patient’s circle, helping them understand what is happening, what they can expect moving forward, and empowering them to provide the care when the team is not present.
Hospice patients can be active and feeling good, and still receive the benefit. We encourage patients to access hospice care as soon as they’re told there is no longer a possibility of cure. Even though they may be feeling physically well, especially after difficult treatments are halted, there is great benefit in signing up for hospice care early, before physical symptoms take over. Early admission allows patients and family members the opportunity to work through the emotional, social, and spiritual matters in their lives, so they are prepared to cope with the tremendous changes that are ahead. Families become comfortable with and learn to trust the hospice team before those especially trying times, making the road easier to travel.
Hospice is available 24 hours per day/7 days per week. In the middle of the night or weekend, patients and families may call to talk with a hospice team member. If needed, the hospice staff member will come to the home to help with the care.
Hospice is provided by a full team of professionals and volunteers. The hospice team consists of many professionals—nurses, aides, social workers, therapists, chaplains, bereavement coordinators, and the medical director, as well as specially-trained volunteers, who all work together to support individuals and their families during their last months of life. The team works closely with the patient, their family, and the patient’s personal physician to develop an individualized plan of care that helps the patient meet their goals for living the last months of their life.
Grief support is provided to surviving family members for at least 13 months. The bereavement staff of the hospice team support the family members after the death for at least 13 months, helping the family through all those painful firsts – the first Thanksgiving, first holidays, first birthday, and first anniversary of the death. Through mailings, phone calls, and optional support groups and individual meetings, those who are grieving can access support along this road of transition.
Your Hospice Team
Each Hospice patient is assigned a hospice team. The team will provide support to the patient, primary caregiver and family. A team member will be available by phone 24-hours a day for support or visits. Generally, the patient’s personal physician consults with a hospice care team of physicians, nurses, social workers, chaplains, hospice aides, and volunteers. Working closely together, team members treat and attend to the patient and family as the ‘unit of care’.
Hospice physicians are available to meet general medical needs for symptom and pain control issues. The hospice physician oversees management of the terminal illness and can serve as a resource for the patient’s attending physician. The hospice physician can make home visits when necessary.
Nurses coordinate all services necessary to optimize the patient’s quality of life within the limits of illness. The nurse will visit the patient as needed. This frequency will vary depending upon the stability of the patient. A main focus of the nurse is to provide instruction to the patient and family regarding the disease process and what can be expected. The nurse will work closely with the patient’s physician to achieve optimal symptom control.
Hospice aides provide personal care to the patient and assists him or her with activities of daily living such as bathing (this can be a sponge bath, tub bath or shower), dressing, feeding, hair care, shaving and skin care. The aide may also change bed linens. These services are provided based on the patient’s need and recommendations of the hospice nurse.
Trained volunteers are available for a variety of needs. Accord Hospice has a volunteer coordinator to work with the hospice nurse to place a volunteer in the home who is most suited to the patient’s needs. The volunteers can run errands or stay with the patient and provide companionship so the caregiver may go out.
Medical Social Services
Social workers provide counseling and assistance for social, emotional and economic difficulties that patients and family members may face. The social worker will provide the patient and family with emotional support as they deal with the changes caused by the terminal illness.
Physical Therapy/Occupational Therapy/ Speech Therapy
The primary goal of hospice is to promote comfort. If your case manager feels therapy will be helpful, a visit will be made if necessary.
Chaplains are able to dialogue about thoughts, values and beliefs related to one’s spiritual life journey.
They will assist with securing or providing religious resources regardless of faith, tradition or spiritual content.
Bereavement counseling is available to anyone affected by the loss for up to 13 months after the death of a loved one. This support may be provided through phone calls, mailings, grief counseling, art therapy, memorial services and support groups.
See your Agency Administrator to see if these services are available at your servicing location: Music therapy, aromatherapy, and massage (personal touch) therapy are ways we can address the additional needs of or patients.