What is Hospice?

Hospice care is a type of health care that focuses on the palliation of a terminally ill patient’s pain and symptoms and attending to the emotional and spiritual needs of the patient at the end of their life. Hospice care may be right for you or your loved one when living with a life-limiting illness that has a six-month life expectancy (if the disease runs its normal course).

Why Hospice Care?

There are a few reasons why you should consider hospice care. The end of a patient’s life can be a grim time, but hospice care can help to ease the burden. The goal of hospice care is to allow patients to enjoy the final stages of their life. Hospice care not only allows patients to reach the end with dignity, but also helps to alleviate some of the pressure for the loved ones of the patient.

Being a primary caregiver for a patient can be rewarding, but it can also be a burden. Family members caring for a terminally ill patient often fall behind on their work and family obligations. This creates a lot of stress for the caregiver. With hospice care, a lot of the burden is lifted for the caregiver. A hospice care provider is able to provide a patient with excellent care and give the primary caregiver some much-needed rest.

Everyone approaches the end of their lives differently, which is why Comfort and Peace focuses on individualized care for our patients. Our hospice care providers put a plan in place to meet the physical, psychological, spiritual, and emotional needs of our patients. Each of our providers is trained specifically to provide end-of-life support. Whether your loved one or you are staying in our facility briefly or are at home, we guarantee the highest level of care possible.

Who is Hospice Care for?

The first thing many people think of when they think of hospice care is cancer. While hospice care is an option for terminally ill cancer patients, it is also available for many other types of terminally ill patients. Really, hospice care is for anyone looking for some extra support and care when reaching the end of their life journey.

Our expert team at Comfort and Peace is able to provide support for patients suffering from a variety of different illnesses. We understand the needs of our patients, and what options are available for support during their final days.

In order to receive hospice care, two physicians will need to certify that a patient is a candidate for this level of care and that they have a terminal prognosis. In other words, if the disease continues, the patient will likely pass away within 6 months. Even if a patient lives longer, the option may still be available. Many times, physicians will suggest hospice care themselves.

Some common illnesses that patients suffer from that lead to the need for hospice care include:

  • Cancer
  • Heart disease
  • Dementia
  • Pulmonary disease
  • Liver disease
  • Renal disease
  • Stroke
  • and others

If you believe you are a candidate for hospice care and have been diagnosed with a terminal illness, reach out to a physician and speak with them about hospice care as an option. They will be able to determine if you are a good candidate.

Keep in mind, insurance coverage or Medicare may be a factor with hospice care. Speak with your insurance provider to see if hospice care is covered. If not, you may need to consider other payment options.

What to Expect

There are four levels of hospice care. The level of care is highly determined by the patients’ conditions. The physician and hospice nurse authorize the changes in level of care.

There’s no out of pocket expense and all medications & equipment related to the terminal diagnosis are covered.

The four levels of hospice care are:

Routine Home Care

Routine home care is provided by compassionate hospice professionals in the patient’s place of residence. The care is delivered by specially trained medical staff, spiritual and social work professionals and volunteers. Assistance with pain management, skilled nursing care and symptom management are provided. The interdisciplinary hospice team coordinates care with the patient and family.

Most patients, with the assistance of the hospice team, are able to remain in their place of residence, whether it is a private home, Assisted Livings or nursing home for the duration of their illness. If the patient lives in an Assisted Living or Nursing Home, the care delivered is in addition to the normal nursing and caregiving care provided by the facility with no out of pocket cost to the patient and family. The care is coordinated by our interdisciplinary hospice team in collaboration with the facility staff, the patient and the family.

We will collaborate with your primary caregivers to ensure the patient and family are comfortable and at peace.

Continuous Care

If the patient’s symptoms are out of control, continuous care will be initiated. Continuous care is provided by our hospice team for several hours a day, up to 24 hours a day, until the crisis is resolved. The hospice nurse will assist in determining when continuous care is needed.

Continuous Care is initiated when symptoms such as pain, anxiety, and respiratory distress are out of control and bedside support is necessary to control these symptoms.

  • We will be by your side irrespective of how long it takes to keep you or your loved one comfortable.
  • Continuous Care gives a higher level of support without having to relocate to a facility.
  • Once the patient has stabilized, we return to Routine Care.

General In-Patient Care

General InPatient Care is similar to Continuous Care. However, If the symptoms cannot be managed at home, we will care for the patient in a facility. During In-Patient Care we assess the patient daily and cover room and board as long as the patient requires this level of symptom management.

Once stabilized, our team transitions your loved one back to a routine level of care.

Respite Care

Respite care is available to the primary caregivers and family in need of rest from caring for the patient. There are several local nursing facilities, as well as private respite homes available for respite care. You or your loved one will be able to stay in one of our contracted facilities for up to five (5) days per benefit period, according to Medicare guidelines.

Respite Care is a short-term relief program designed to give the primary caregiver in need of rest an opportunity to tend to other concerns. Our team will relocate you or your loved one for up to 5 days and we cover room and board during this respite period.

  • Families choose respite care to “catch up” on life, attend important events (e.g. high school graduation, church events)
  • Caregivers often depend on respite care to get rest and recharge with peace of mind that their loved one is in good hands.
  • At the end of Respite Care, the patient is transferred to Routine Care in their place of residence.

What to Look for in a Hospice Care Provider

Choosing the right hospice care provider is an extremely important decision. Below are a few of the things you’ll want to consider when picking your provider:

  • A Strong Staff. It’s extremely important that a hospice care provider has an amazing and full staff. Many hospice care nurses have full loads—upwards of 18-20 patients. At Comfort and Peace Hospice our goal is to improve this ratio so we can provide better care.
  • On-Call Services. Your hospice care provider should be on call 24/7. The need for an unplanned visit may arise, and you’ll want to feel comfortable knowing a hospice care provider can meet your loved one or you at any time of day.
  • Frequency. Some hospice care providers provide more visits than others. Make sure you find a hospice care provider that can meet your needs.
  • Transition. Transitioning to hospice care can be difficult. The right hospice care provider provides a seamless transition and ensures the patient is comfortable throughout every step of the process.
  • Quick Response Time. If a patient is in need, it’s important for their hospice care provider to be there swiftly.
  • Excellent Customer Service. Whether it’s a warm smile or help making paperwork easier, the right hospice care provider will provide the best customer service possible for both their patients and the loved ones of their patients.

What is Music Therapy?

Music therapy is not only fun, but it is also extremely effective. This form of therapy is backed up by clinical evidence and research. The ability to hear is one of the last senses that registers with and benefits a dying patient. This is particularly the case for music.

There are a few different symptoms that music therapy can help with. These include:

  • Pain
  • Decrease brain function
  • Respiratory distress
  • Anxiety and Agitation
  • Grief
  • Depression
  • Stress

Music therapy also helps with:

  • Mood enhancement
  • Communication and expression
  • Spiritual support
  • Caregiver and family support
  • Legacy projects
  • Family bonding

Music has a strong impact on the brain, and it is a multi-sensory experience. This means it affects your ears, eyes, and skin. Because of this, music therapy can have a strong impact on your cognitive, emotional, and even physical wellbeing.

We Honor the Military and Our Veterans

At Comfort and Peace Hospice we are grateful to all our great military, our veterans and their families for the sacrifice they make for our beloved country. We are a proud member of the We Honor Veterans program. Our goal is to provide customized care that honors the individual and their service.

Some of our veteran care includes:

  • Assistance with VA and other military benefits
  • Assessment of military service
  • Honor ceremonies and events
  • Connection with VA services
  • Providing counseling and care that deals with service-related memories or issues
  • Assisting with military funeral and memorial services

We want to ensure veterans get the sendoff that they deserve.

How Long Can Someone Stay in Hospice Care in Temecula?

The length of hospice care depends on a few different factors. In order for a patient to qualify, they need to be diagnosed with a terminal illness. It is expected the patient will pass away in around 6 months or so. If the process takes longer, hospice care may be extended.

A major factor is insurance coverage or Medicare. Speak with your provider to learn more about hospice care and your level of coverage.