For any individual facing a life-limiting diagnosis, regardless of age or type of illness, hospice care is the best option as it offers many important benefits. This care facility focuses on improving or maintaining the highest quality of life through emotional, spiritual, and physical support.
Unfortunately, hospice care is often misunderstood as most people hold many misperceptions and even fears about this type of comfort care. Believing in these misconceptions can keep patients and their families from seeking the right care and benefits.
To help you steer clear of these misconceptions, Ultimate Great Care Hospice has debunked three of the most widely believed myths about hospice.
Myth 1: “Hospice is just going to want to stop all medications and start morphine.”
No medications are stopped or started without MD recommendation, and patient and family complete agreement. It is true that some medications in light of end-stage disease do not make any sense to continue. Stopping these medications frequently improves the quality of life as associated side effects are eliminated. Medications that manage disease and symptoms should be continued for patient comfort. Additionally, not all patients on hospice even have morphine. Morphine is useful for controlling pain, shortness of breath, and instilling a sense of calm and is prescribed on an as-needed basis.
Myth 2: “The doctor is the only one that can determine if it is time for hospice.”
Patients and families often initiate the hospice conversation based on stories they have heard about others’ experiences or experiences they have had in the past. Hospice is allowed to meet with patients and families for information visits without an MD order. If the patient and family want to start hospice, an MD order is needed at that point.
Myth 3: “I don’t need hospice until the last few days.”
The number one complaint from families that benefited from hospice was that they wish they had agreed to start services earlier. Hospice services can begin when the doctor feels that the patient has six months or so to live. That way, the patient or family gets familiar with visiting staff and hospice staff, and in turn, they have a better understanding of patient and family situations. It helps when you are taking your very last breath, if you have support from the staff you already know, instead of strangers sent in at the last minute to help out.
If you’re looking to steer clear of more myths like these, reach out to Ultimate Great Care Hospice. We are an accredited hospice care agency in Simi Valley, California, and we focus on providing the best care possible for our patients and their families. Our goal is to provide compassionate care for clients experiencing life-limiting illnesses by keeping them comfortable and managing pain.
We serve clients across Simi Valley, Thousand Oaks, Newbury Park, Los Angeles County, Burbank, Glendale, Pasadena, San Fernando Valley, Azusa, and the surrounding areas.