Hospice Myth: Hospice Is Only for Life’s Last Days

Each month we set the facts straight regarding myths surrounding hospice care.

This month’s myth: Hospice care is only for the last days of life

Many believe that hospice care is only appropriate for those who are in their last days of life.

However, hospice care is appropriate when patients and those who love them are in agreement with a palliative, comfort-oriented approach to care.

Earlier referral to the hospice program allows the hospice team to fully understand what is important to the patient and tailor the plan of care to meet his or her unique needs.

Together, the physician, patient and family determine when hospice care is needed and what services are necessary. A patient can receive hospice care when a life-limiting illness is present, and life expectancy is six months or less if the disease follows its normal course.

Criteria for hospice admission:
• Patient has a confirmed diagnosis of a life-limiting illness with a prognosis of six months or less
• Physician and patient have determined that curative therapy is no longer available or desired
• Patient, family and physician are aware of prognosis and agree with a comfort-oriented approach to care

If you are unsure whether you or your loved one is ready for hospice care, contact Carroll Hospice directly at 410-871-8000.

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