During a terminal patient’s final weeks, pain management becomes a crucial factor when it comes to quality of life. Hospice providers focus on palliative care in order to keep patients comfortable as they live out their days, whether they reside at home or in a senior living community. Families can also turn to their loved one’s hospice care team for emotional and spiritual support.
A hospice care team will be on-hand during your loved one’s final weeks to ensure that they remain comfortable and free from pain. Trained support staff work with families to develop a care plan that will meet the physical and emotional needs of their loved one.
A hospice care doctor, along with your primary care doctor, will lead your care team in administering a plan that will meet all of your basic needs during your time in hospice.
A nurse will be in charge of your day-to-day checkups, helping with tasks such as washing, eating and administering medication. Home health aides provide daily medical services for hospice patients living at home.
Homemaker services can provide relief for informal caregivers by helping out with chores, errands and other household tasks.
Hospice volunteers are trained to help out around the home and to provide companionship for terminal patients and their families.
Bereaved families can seek emotional support and spiritual guidance from local social workers, counselors and clergy members.
Friends and neighbors, while not part of the hospice care team, often help out terminal patients during their last weeks. A nearby personal support network can be useful for housebound patients that need anything from help with the shopping to daily company.
The Oregon Hospice & Palliative Care Organization helps Oregon residents to learn about and access hospice services in their area. The group maintains an active directory of hospice providers throughout Oregon, including over a dozen that serve patients living in Portland. You can go online to find out more about how to locate and contact hospice care providers close to you.
Seniors looking for hospice care options can also hop online and visit SeniorAdvisor to view local home health agencies and residential care facilities that offer hospice services. Comfort Home, the Porthaven Health Care Center, and other nursing homes are able to cater to the needs of terminal residents, while patients who receive care at home can check SeniorAdvisor for in-home care options.
Thousands of Oregon seniors rely on government aid to pay for hospice services each year. Original Medicare covers hospice services for seniors with a life expectancy of less than six months, while the Oregon Medicaid program covers care costs for low-income seniors. Veterans may be eligible to receive hospice care at home, in a senior care community, or at the nearby VA Vancouver location with no copayments to worry about. Seniors that do not qualify for government assistance can take out a private insurance policy in order to access affordable hospice care services.
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