When an older loved one's health starts to decline and you sense the end is near, there are a lot of decisions to make. You may want to begin making funeral arrangements, ensuring a will is in place, and encouraging various relatives to visit. You will also need to make some medical plans for the next few weeks or months. While there are several options out there, hospice care is a popular one, and it deserves a spot at the top of your list of options for the following reasons.
1. Hospice can allow the patient to remain in their home.
Your relative's home is likely the place where they feel most comfortable. This is where they will be happiest spending their last days. Rather than pass away in a hospital or an elderly care center that they are unfamiliar with, they can spend their time at home while being given the care they need by hospice workers.
2. Hospice employs expert caregivers.
In most cases, your loved one will be cared for by a team of nurses and certified nursing assistants while under hospice care. These trained professionals specialize in end-of-life care and are able to ensure your relative's needs are met. They know what pain relievers to provide, how to interact productively with patients, how to bathe patients comfortably, and so forth. Your relative may not receive such precise, targeted care from the more generalized workers in a hospital setting.
3. Hospice workers care for the family, too.
Did you know that hospice workers do not just provide care for their immediate patients? They can also provide services like counseling and support for the families of the patient. These workers can help you come to terms with the position your loved one is in. They can offer emotional support as you navigate tasks like funeral planning and drafting DNR orders.
4. Hospice takes the burden off of you.
You are likely beginning to grieve at this time, and you are probably also dealing with a lot of other emotions. You could probably use a break, and hospice workers can give you that. They can handle tasks like preparing meals for your loved one, bathing them, and moving them in and out of bed so that you don't have to do these things.
Hospice care is often a wise choice for an older person whose days are coming to an end. There are real benefits worth exploring, so talk to a health care worker to learn more.
To learn more, contact a hospice care provider.