Dying at Home with Hospice
No one can anticipate what the final chapter of life will look like, neither the dying nor the caregivers who live through that chapter with them. For most of our lives we manage to avoid any and all discussion of death, thinking that if we just put our heads in the sand it will just disappear from human reality. But when the end of life is within sight, the decision must be made as to whether one will be living their final days in a hospital or dying at home with hospice care.
What are the Benefits of Dying at Home with Hospice?
Most people today prefer to die at home. The home hospice option is seen as a compassionate and humane setting for the final stage of life, so each year the percentage of those who opt for dying at home with hospice continues to grow, according to statistics provided by the Journal of the American Medical Association.
Generally, the perceived benefits of dying at home with hospice include:
- Enhanced comfort in the home environment
- Additional family support
- More freedom of movement
- Accommodates visitors better
- Higher quality of palliative care
What Does Home Hospice Entail?
Think of home hospice as comfort care. A hospice team can provide relief from pain, discomfort, breathing difficulties, and other symptoms of declining health in the comfort of one’s home environment in the final stages of life. Hospice care is comprehensive in nature, including various care providers for not only physical care but also one’s emotional and spiritual needs. The hospice team will likely include a physician that oversees medication prescribing, a hospice nurse, a home health aide, trained volunteers, a social worker, and members of the clergy.
The objective of home hospice is to assist the individual as they transition through the phases that are involved in the dying process. Hospice support will be adjusted as needs escalate, as will the medications that alleviate pain. The social worker provides emotional support for both the individual and the family, preparing them for the transition.
The Role of the Family in Hospice
For additional care, such as basic hygiene and bathing, house cleaning, running errands, and other practical things the family often assists. It is important for a family to divide the many demands of care-giving among the various family members to help avoid burnout and feelings of resentment. Creating a schedule that assigns certain errands and duties to each family member will smooth the way for a more peaceful care-giving experience.
The family can also opt to hire home hospice nurses to assist with these needs. This assistance can vary in scope and cost depending on the needs of the family to cover some of the care-giving demands. Respite care is available for a caregiver who simply needs a break from the daily support of their loved one, where the patient can be transferred to a hospice facility for a few days. Sometimes this break in care-giving duties is necessary, especially with a protracted hospice period or with the care-giving demands of a serious illness like cancer.
Kinkaid Private Care Coordinates High Quality Home Hospice Care
Kinkaid Private Care is a private healthcare management company that provides the coordination of highly trained home hospice nurses to care for your loved one. Kinkaid Private Care home hospice and end-of-life care offers comprehensive comfort and support services to maximize quality of life in one’s final days. Our compassionate hospice team provides care for all aspects of life, including physical well-being, social attachment, spiritual needs, and emotional concerns. For more information about dying at home with hospice, please contact Kinkaid Private Care today at (877) 388-6373.