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Savannah End-of-Life Care

End-of-life care in Savannah, also known as hospice care, is a popular option for patients with a terminal disease or in the end stages of a fatal illness with a prognosis of six to twelve months. These conditions can include Alzheimer’s disease, the later stage of dementia, Parkinson’s disease, Lou Gehrig’s disease, multiple sclerosis (MS), chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD), kidney or liver disease, stroke, cancer, or complications from AIDS.

The focus of care is on the patient’s quality of life and comfort during these last months by managing their pain and symptoms while surrounded by loved ones. Family members and caregivers can receive respite relief, counseling, and bereavement support. The hospice staff will work with the care team such as doctors, specialists, nurses, counselors, social workers, health aides, and volunteers.

Since hospice care is well-accepted in the country, most facilities offer the service including assisted living communities and nursing homes. You can also recruit hospice care into your home to ensure your loved one is comfortable.

End-of-Life Services and Licensing Requirements in Georgia

All hospice providers in Georgia must be licensed, according to the Georgia Department of Community Health. The Department provides a checklist for providers to use to ensure they are meeting the requirements. You may want to familiarize yourself with these guidelines, so you can be certain a prospective hospice service is meeting requirements.

The Community Health Accreditation Partner (CHAP) states that Georgia does not require its hospice providers to carry a certificate of need. You can use CHAP’s website to find hospice providers in the Savannah area that have passed the certification process. Make sure that you research and interview hospice agencies before hiring one to serve the needs of your loved one and your family.

End-of-Life Care Costs in the Savannah Area

Unlike costs for an assisted living community or nursing home, the total cost for hospice care varies because it is focused on multidisciplinary care that is different from patient to patient. The majority of private insurances cover hospice care as well as Medicare Part A; however, Medicare will not cover room and board in a facility. TRICARE, the insurance carried by veterans, covers hospice 100 percent.

Georgia Medicaid will cover hospice services if the agency is a Medicaid participating provider. Medicaid will only pay for hospice when the prognosis is six months or less with an income limit of $2,130 per month.

Where to Find End-of-Life Providers and Services in the City

There are hospice agencies throughout Savannah including Hospice Savannah, Spanish Oaks Hospice, and Gentiva Hospice.

You can also find assisted living facilities and skilled nursing homes providing hospice services such as Habersham House, Savannah Square, CaraVita’s Summer Breeze, Marsh View Senior Living, Buckingham South, Kindred Transitional Care and Rehab, and Insignia of Savannah.

You can find more facilities offering hospice on a senior care directory website or through the Better Business Bureau (BBB). These sites also list ratings and reviews to help you get an idea of the type of services each provider offers.

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