There are many thoughts that come to mind when you hear the word “hospice.” Some may immediately think of the last few days of a loved one’s life or others may feel a deep sense of appreciation for the months their loved one spent receiving care and support at home. While we are honored when family members make comments such as, “how could we have ever done this without you” or “your help has been a blessing,” it’s almost disappointing when we hear, “I wish we would have known about hospice much sooner.”
According to a recent study highlighted in the National Hospice and Palliative Care Organization’s Facts and Figures, patients who choose hospice care lived an average of one month longer than similar patients who did not choose hospice care. During this extra time, patients and families are redefining hope while spending quality time with each other.
The Hospice of Siouxland team of professionals offers care depending on the unique needs of each patient and family. Our team of physicians, nurses, home health aides, social workers, therapists, chaplains and volunteers visit as often as needed to relieve pain, address fears and the team is available around the clock to address crises that need an immediate response. Hospice team members will talk with patients and families about their choices for care they wish to receive and advocate the individual’s wishes are known and respected.
Talking to someone about hospice may be difficult initially, but after learning the benefits hospice care brings to a patient and their family members that may be all you need to know. Not only can the quality of life improve for the patient, but hospice care also will remove the stress for the individual’s caregiver. The final months can be lived to the fullest knowing the patient is comfortable and has peace of mind.
Don’t skip the topic of hospice. Be courageous enough to invite what may bring hope to the last walk of life’s journey. Some patients and caregivers fear that choosing hospice means that nothing more can be done. “I wish you had the opportunity to read the letters of gratitude that come from families that have experienced the care and compassion provided by Hospice of Siouxland – their only regret many times is – ‘I wish I would have had hospice sooner’.”
If someone you know is facing a serious or life-limiting illness, now is the time to find out more about Hospice of Siouxland. If you are overwhelmed with a life threatened illness – either as an individual or as a caregiver – call Hospice of Siouxland to find the help that is available to you and your family.