“It’s time for hospice” – difficult words for families to hear. As a family caregiver, you may have given some thought to the day when you would have to make that decision for an aging parent or other loved one – but you’re never quite prepared – not yet, why now? The thought of hospice often brings about the impression that it’s a way of just “letting them die.” Accepting the inevitable death of a loved one is an emotional hardship that no one is ever really prepared to face. Although this is sometimes hard to face, the goal of hospice care is to provide palliative care for terminally ill individuals while allowing them as well as their families to focus on their personal and spiritual needs as they prepare for the end of life.
Making a decision about placing a loved one under hospice care is difficult enough, finding the appropriate one and one that accommodates the family’s needs is yet another consideration.
Asking the following questions will be helpful in helping you find the agency which is best for you.
- How long has this agency been in business?
- Are they an accredited agency?
- Are they willing to give me references?
Although a difficult topic to broach especially with family members, it’s one that can and should be done in a sensitive and a compassionate manner for all those involved. Dr. Justo Cisneros, MD Medical Director, Hospice Inspiris, guides viewers in a three-part series about hospice and what families can expect during a hospice experience. Dr. Cisneros discusses the many issues that families often misunderstand about hospice and expresses the importance of offering the hospice patient a full measure of dignity and comfort as they become less able to express their thoughts and needs. You will want to watch Part 1, Part 2 and Part 3 of the series and although the presentation is on-demand, you are encouraged to send in your questions for Dr. Cisneros.