Factors to Consider in Choosing a Hospice Care Center
Hospice care is focused on providing compassion and comfort for terminally ill patients. Centers for hospice have high-tech equipment and well-trained staff to ensure they adequately meet every patient’s needs.
Fully covered by Medicare, Medicaid, and most private insurers, hospice care is available for anyone and does not discriminate based on age, illness, race, or religion. For a patient to be eligible for hospice care, two physicians must issue certifications that the individual has indeed less than six months left to live.
If you plan to put a loved one under hospice care, read this article to learn about factors you should consider in choosing the best center for their needs.
Check if the hospice facility is Medicare-accredited and if the staff members are certified to provide hospice care. These aspects will allow you to assess whether the center can assist your loved one in the best possible manner.
Accreditation implies the high-quality care the center can offer and its adherence to established medical standards and policies. We also recommend checking for membership in the National Hospice and Palliative Care Organization.
To ensure that your loved one will be in good hands, examine the specific services a hospice care facility offers. Some centers have programs for children and those with particular diseases, while others don’t. Make sure to assess the following aspects as well:
- Freestanding Facilities – Some hospice care facilities have temporary residences to allow the patients to live in a homey setting. Take note, though, that Medicare or Medicaid does not cover this service, and you may have to seek insurance from a separate provider.
- Continuous Care – In the event that death is imminent, will the center send personnel to prove bedside assistance until the patient passes away? This is also an essential question to ask in choosing hospice care that will cater to you and your loved one’s needs.
- Inpatient Care – If you prefer, choose a hospice center that offers respite services for caregivers. Make sure to visit the facility to check the location and quality if they provide inpatient care.
- Preexisting Treatments – It is important that a hospice facility continue your loved one’s treatments. This is because Medicare does not require continued treatment, so some centers do not provide one.
- Response Times – Ask the facility about their available support on nights, weekends, and other emergencies. Response times and personnel support vary, so make sure to know these details.
In terms of the comprehensive services they offer, hospice care centers differ, so you must examine each one according to the aspects above. A typical hospice team consists of hospice physicians, nurses, clergy members, and social workers. You can also expect trained physical, occupational, and speech therapists whenever necessary.
You can count on this team to design the appropriate care plan, handle symptoms management, and provide emotional and spiritual support for your family. They can also coach your household members about how to take care of the patient best. After the patient passes away, the hospice staff also comforts the bereaved through counseling initiatives.
If you need trusted hospice care in Morristown for your loved one, turn to Morristown HC. Our center strives to serve as a link between the hospital and your home. Our high-caliber, patient-centered care is recognized in our status as a member of Atlantic Health System’s esteemed FICT program. Feel free to get in touch with our staff if you have any questions or concerns.