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What Is Hospice Care?

What Is Hospice Care?
The recent decision by former President Jimmy Carter to transition to hospice brings much-needed attention to this crucial part of healthcare.

What is Hospice care? Hospice care is an essential and compassionate component of modern medicine, providing support and care to patients and families during the most challenging time of their lives. MedPage Today’s recent article entitled, “What Jimmy Carter Reminds Us About Dying,” says that historically, hospice care has been seen as “giving up on treatment.” However, it provides comfort and support at the end of life (typically defined as an expected survival of less than six months). The truth is, hospice neither hastens nor postpones death.

When patients start hospice care, the focus shifts to managing symptoms, emotional support, and spiritual care for a terminal illness. As one local St. Louis, Missouri area hospice company,
Caris Healthcare, states, “The primary goal of hospice care is to promote comfort and dignity through the alleviation of physical, emotional, and spiritual discomfort. The goal of hospice is to focus on living, not dying.”

Hospice providers work with patients and families to develop individualized care plans that address specific needs and preferences.

Hospice care can complement procedural medicine by focusing on the latter, improving the patient’s quality of life and alleviating suffering.

These providers work closely with doctors, nurses, and social workers to ensure that patients receive comprehensive medical care. In addition, they can offer various services, including pain management, symptom relief and emotional support.

Hospice care is provided in multiple settings, including the patient’s home, an assisted living or skilled nursing facility, a special hospice facility, or a hospital.

Although hospice care has been politicized as “death panels,” it is not a death sentence.

Hospice is rather a component of modern medicine that provides support and care to patients and their families during difficult times.

These care providers understand the physical, emotional, and spiritual challenges of facing a terminal illness. Through their care, they emphasize quality of life, rather than length of life.

By working closely with procedural medicine, hospice care can also provide a more comprehensive, patient-centered approach, improving the patient’s quality of life and providing the best possible support. For help in the St. Louis or St. Charles county areas in Missouri, contact Caris Healthcare. For assistance with making sure your estate is in order, contact Beck, Lenox & Stolzer.

Reference: MedPage Today (Feb. 21, 2023) “What Jimmy Carter Reminds Us About Dying”

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