End-of-life care is a coordinated service that works with a team of doctors, nurses, specialists, social workers, home health aides, clergy, and volunteers to bring comfort and pain and symptom management to patients in the end stages of terminal diseases and conditions. These diseases and conditions include: Parkinson’s disease, Alzheimer’s disease, liver disease, kidney disease, Lou Gehrig’s disease, multiple sclerosis (MS), chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD), stroke, congestive heart failure, cancer, and complications from AIDS.
You can find hospice care at many skilled nursing facilities, assisted living communities, and Alzheimer’s care centers. Hospice care can also take place within your home if you feel the most comfortable in that atmosphere. The program offers comprehensive services to the family and caregivers, including respite care and bereavement support that can begin at the six to twelve month prognosis. Studies show patients receiving hospice live longer than those that do not receive the care.
You can expect a team of compassionate professionals to deliver their expertise to you and your family in a timely manner. Each team member should display a caring attitude and produce a high standard of care. You can find ratings and reviews online for hospice providers in your area as well as ask friends and family for recommendations.
In Virginia, hospice providers have licensing and certification requirements they must follow. The providers can also seek accreditation through the Community Health Accreditation Partner, also known as CHAP. This independent accreditation board maintains a national database of hospice providers. Simply choose to search under Virginia or choose a different state if you are planning to move in the near future. Many of the providers listed are Medicare certified and meet the stringent federal requirements.
Costs vary for hospice care and can include inpatient respite care, continuous care, in-home care, and more. Your care is personalized to your specific situation and the services you need. Medicare Part A covers hospice care 100 percent and reimburses the hospice provider with a set daily amount.
Third-party personal insurances and TRICARE also cover hospice, although you may have copayments with your insurance company. Make sure the policy lists hospice care as a benefit. Some hospice providers are willing to work with patients to cover costs when there is no insurance or Medicare. Since Virginia Medicaid does not cover hospice, the provider may offer sliding scale fees based on your income, flexible payment plans, or refer you to a charitable organization.
There are over a dozen hospice agencies in Richmond as well as assisted living communities, skilled nursing facilities, and Alzheimer’s disease care centers that provide hospice care. You can find hospice agency listings online that include At Home Care Hospice, Aseracare, New Century Hospice of Columbus, Heartland Hospice, and Hospice Community Care Harbor Light.
Many facilities provide hospice care to their residents. These include places, like The Windsor Memory Care and The Hermitage, that both won SeniorAdvisor.com’s Best of Senior Living 2016 award. Other facilities to consider are Sunrise of Richmond, Brookdale West End Richmond, Morningside in the West End, The Towers, Brookdale Imperial Plaza, and Greenfield Residences at Monument.
Find assisted living in Richmond near you.