Hospice care is focused on the quality of life for people who are terminally ill, and who are in the advanced stages of their illness. Hospice care provides compassionate care for people in the last stages of incurable diseases so that their life can be as comfortable as possible.

Hospice does not accelerate or delay death if it is used once death is the final stage of life itself. With hospice, it is used to treat the person, rather than treating the disease.


When Should Hospice Care Begin?

Generally speaking, hospice care should be used when the loved one has 6 months or less to live, hospice is used when treatment can no longer cure or help the patient.

Families should have a discussion, with their family doctor to decide when would be the best time to start the hospice care.

Hospice will bring a quality of life back to your loved one, making each day their best day with their illness, hospice is not giving up, but studies have shown that hospice treatment is often not started soon enough.

If you have found that treatments are no longer working, dementia has progressed, and there are no more treatment options, it is probably the right time to have the convocation with your doctor about hospice.

Palliative Care

Palliative care is part of hospice care, it is also referred to as supportive care, symptom management, or comfort care. Palliative care does not treat cancer but is used when the cancer is no longer being treated. It is used to help with any side effects and treat any symptoms.

Palliative care looks to treat the person with relief from the symptoms, stress, and pain. It gives the patients the option to participate in their care planning.

Making sure that all of their care needs are met, the palliative care team will help with the mental, spiritual, emotional, and physical issues that they may have, they will support the patient as much as possible.

The most important part of hospice services is that the patient is as comfortable as possible, to allow them to enjoy the final stage of their life, it will eliminate pain and discomfort, and make sure that they are able to enjoy the people that are around them.

Hospice care
Getting the best hospice care

Home Hospice Care

Hospice care is usually done at home, but if needed it can also be done in an assisted living facility, hospice care is designed for your loved one to be as comfortable as possible, no matter where they are.

Spiritual care can help and cater to the individual’s religious beliefs can help with saying goodbye, and make the individual more comfortable.

Organizing family meetings, to help the whole family to understand what to expect, these meetings can be used for family members to share their feelings, and help to process the dying process of their loved one.

These family meetings can be very therapeutic for the whole family, keep everyone on the same page, and give the family updates on their loved ones.

Respite care can also be arranged, when a loved one needs a little break to make sure that their health is not being compromised, respite care can also be done in assisted living homes or senior care homes.

Bereavement is the mourning period after the loss of your loved one, and hospice care will also work with the loved ones through this difficult period.

Your hospice team can also refer loved ones to additional professional care if needed. Professional counselors, religious members, and other support groups can be provided.

Hospice Care and Palliative Care

Hospice care and palliative care both aim to provide a better quality of life at the end of life, and relief from symptoms and side effects for people with serious illnesses.

Both will have special care teams that will help with a person’s physical, emotional, mental, social, and spiritual needs. But although hospice care often includes palliative care, they are not the same thing.

Palliative care can be provided at any time or at any stage of serious illness, whereas hospice care is provided at the final stages or near the end of life, due to some incurable illness.

What is Hospice Care?

Palliative care can be done at the same time as treatment, for example, it can be given during chemo, radiation, or other treatments. Hospice is used when there is no cure for a serious illness, or all medical treatments no longer work, hospice will manage the symptoms and side effects of the illness.

Your hospice team will manage all of the care and be in communication with the patient’s medical team, whereas the Palliative care team will be separate from the medical team, it will communicate with the medical team but it will be giving and managing the treatment.

We hope that this article on hospice and what it is has been helpful, here at Loving Assisted Living, we will help you to find the right assisted living community for your loved one.

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