Hospice is not a 'place'--Hospice is a philosophy of care. Hospice offers a set of specialized health care services toward a different goal: maintaining or improving quality of life (wellbeing) for someone whose illness, disease or condition is unlikely to be cured. Hospice is something more that is available to the patient and the entire family when curative measures have been exhausted (Hospice Foundation of America, 2019).
Although the illness may not be curable, a lot can be done to make patients more comfortable so they can do things that are important to them at this stage in their life. I think we can all agree that the last chapter of an extraordinary story is the most important. By expertly managing pain and other symptoms and adapting the level of care to the changing conditions, hospice helps individual to live as well as possible.
When we think about our mortality, what do we value most about our lives? We want to be fearless and die well. We want a human face on medicine. In our life's journey, this is our final stage of growth. One of the most common comments hospice care providers hear from patients and families is that they wish they had experienced the benefits of hospice care sooner. Share your story, your hopes and your values with the hospice team of professionals and their experience and skills will focus on carrying out your wishes. Continue to live your life with the hospice team just a phone call away (NHPCO).
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