Saying goodbye to a loved one during their dying months can be one of the saddest and most stressful events in anyone's life. You are required to learn how to cope with your own feelings, while still caring and providing for the ailing friend or family member's physical, mental, social, and spiritual, needs. A hospitality care team provides support for you, your loved ones, and any family members. Here are 5 frequently asked questions about receiving care in the last months at home.
What does home care do to keep my loved one comfortable?
This family centered team includes a doctor and nurse, social worker, therapist or counselor, chaplain, your home health aide and possibly trained volunteers. As an illness progresses, patients may experience extreme pain or other serious issues. This network of professionals act together, usually on an on-call basis 24 hours a day, 7 days a week to help alleviate any pain, discomfort, or stress. Your home health aide will communicate with your doctor to create the best plan of medication, therapy, and procedures to keep your loved one pain-free, so they can focus on spending time with their loved ones.
How do I start a home care program?
In order to basically begin a home care program, a physician must first make a referral. After reviewing the patient's information and the referral from their doctor, a program representative will get in touch within 48 hours to discuss the illness, needs, and daily schedule of both the patient and all family members. Typically it takes less than a day or two from the time of the referral to get care set up, but in emergency situations this can be accomplished even sooner.
When is the right time to ask about getting home care?
Bringing up the need for receiving medical treatment and care so that you or your loved one can stay at home during the final stages of your illness can be extremely difficult. However, it is best to discuss these things well in advance and have a plan in place, before it becomes a concern. This can help reduce much of the stress and discomfort associated with making decisions about your treatment. Instead, you can make educated decisions in advance and have a plan in place as you progress through treatment.
Will I be the only patient served?
As mentioned previously, your home health team will include a registered nurse, home health aide, chaplain or counselor, and often a volunteer with whom you will see the most. These people may serve somewhere around a dozen different patients in your geographic area. Social workers may have double this amount of patients. In addition to these professionals, your doctor and any specialists will work together to create a plan and schedule for your care.
Can I receive treatment at a nursing or long-term care facility?
Services can be delivered to you or your loved one regardless of where you live. So, if you are currently living in a nursing facility or long-term care center you can receive specialized visits from your home care team in addition to the care you receive from your living facility. Usually the hospice team will create a written agreement with your living facility to best serve their patients.