The holiday season may feel different to you if you or your loved one have been diagnosed with only a few months to live. November is more than the month for turkey and cranberry sauce. For hospice workers and patients, November is National Hospice and Palliative Care Month. This month, you and your loved ones should take time to discuss end-of-life wishes if you haven’t already.
Are you looking for end-of-life care? Hospice gives people the care they need to live their final days to the fullest.
Read more about National Hospice and Palliative Care Month and the benefits of hospice care.
What Is National Hospice & Palliative Care Month?
National Hospice and Palliative Care Month was created to educate people about the benefits of hospice and the challenges of end-of-life. The first national holiday regarding hospice care began in 1982 with National Hospice Week. Since then, National Hospice Week has expanded to the entire month of November.
Hospice care supports your physical, emotional, and spiritual needs during end-of-life. With hospice, you will be able to focus on family, friends, and anything you want to accomplish before passing away. As you receive hospice care, you will be able to live out your remaining days with dignity and find closure.
Benefits of Hospice Care
Hospice care helps you and your loved ones cope with the final stage of life. As a hospice patient, you will receive care based on your needs. Your support team will consist of registered nurses, trained caregivers, chaplains, and volunteers from the community.
The benefits of hospice care include:
- Care Anywhere. Most disease treatment occurs inside of a hospital, but hospice care comes to you. With hospice, you choose where you receive your care. You can receive hospice in the hospital, at a care facility, or within your own home.
- Symptom Relief. When you begin hospice, you stop treatment for your disease. However, that doesn’t mean you no longer receive medical care. Hospice treats your symptoms to relieve pain and make you more comfortable.
- Help With Daily Activities. Hospice caregivers can help you with activities of daily living. Caregivers are trained to help with personal care, such as bathing or dressing, and home tasks, like cooking or laundry.
- Spiritual Reflection. Hospice gives you the chance to reflect on your life and come to terms with death. Through spiritual support, hospice services can help you find peace and meaning in life. Spiritual care in hospice is for all faiths, and it is optional.
- Grief Support. After the patient has passed, hospice care continues to support the patient’s family. Loved ones have access to grief counseling for up to 13 months through a social worker or chaplain. Many hospice programs may have support groups or memorial services to help family members grieve.
Are you and your loved ones thinking about hospice?