Disproving Myths About Hospice Care

We would like to take this opportunity to dispel some of the myths that people have about hospice – from what the word means to how to get hospice care for you or a loved one. 

Hospice care is open to anyone who needs it, and it might be more flexible than you realize. So, we’ve put together ten myths about hospice, and then dispel them for you. 

Since there is a lot of miscommunication and misunderstanding around the idea of hospice, we are glad to provide you with full, clear, honest facts. 

Myth One

“I always thought hospice was a place – that building that I passed on the way home from work.”

Truth:

Hospice is a philosophy of care, not a place, and can be provided anywhere the patient calls home. The freedom to still be in your own home is one of the things that makes hospice care more attractive and effective than some alternatives. We believe in the dignity of seniors and those with life-limiting conditions. This is why we provide hospital-grade healthcare at your convenience.

Myth Two

“I thought that if my mother was under the care of hospice, she could no longer go to the hospital if she needed to.”

Truth:

A hospice patient always has the choice of whether to go to the hospital or not. Hospice is not about running out of options. It’s about choice. We respect the rights and wishes of our patients. While we provide hospital-grade care with staff that includes physicians, nurse practitioners, and nurses, a patient can still go to hospital if they wish to.

Myth Three

“I didn’t know that hospice could help take care of my dad in his assisted living apartment.”

Truth:

Hospice provides care wherever the patient calls home. We provide personalized and compassionate care. That includes offering our services where our patients want to be. An assisted living apartment can provide privacy and peace of mind. We ensure that our services prioritize dignity, independence, and choice. 

Myth Four

“The doctor said I had to sign a Do Not Resuscitate (DNR) order for my wife in order to get hospice. I couldn’t do that. It seemed so final.”

Truth:

A patient can receive hospice without having signed a DNR. 

Hospice cannot discriminate against patients because of any advance directive choices. An advance care plan describes the decisions you would make if you became unable to do so due to an accident or illness. An advance directive is a legal document that may include your power of attorney (or health proxy) and your decisions regarding end-of-life care. 

While it’s a good idea for everyone to think more about end-of-life and create documents for peace of mind, hospice is not dependent on such documents.

Myth Five

“I didn’t consider hospice care early because my dad was still getting blood transfusions regularly and we weren’t ready to stop.”

Truth:

The Medicare Hospice Benefit may cover chemotherapy, radiation, blood transfusions, or other treatments if those treatments are providing comfort for patients eligible to receive the benefit. This official government booklet provides detailed information on Medicare Hospice Benefits, including who is eligible and the services included. Alternatively, we invite you to get in touch with us for more information. 

Myth Six

“I thought that hospice was only for patients with cancer.”

Truth:

More than 60% of hospice patients nationwide have diagnoses other than cancer. 

Hospice offers palliative care for adults, young adults, and children with a variety of life-limiting conditions. These conditions include, but are not limited to, heart, liver, and renal failure, neurological conditions, such as motor neurone disease, and respiratory conditions like chronic obstructive pulmonary disease. 

At Sholom, we provide palliative care for seniors and have developed an excellent reputation for senior care. 

Myth Seven

“I thought I had to be available as the designated caregiver 24 hours a day in order for my mom to get hospice.”

Truth:

Sholom Johnson Hospice does not require caregivers prior to the patient being admitted. We find that patients benefit most from hospice services when they engage with us earlier rather than waiting for a condition to worsen or to provide a family caregiver in the first instance. 

If you are unsure whether or not it is time for hospice, we urge you to get in touch with us. This way, we can provide you with the best information and support for your loved one.

Myth Eight

“We didn’t consider hospice for my dad because we thought it was too expensive.”

Truth:

The Medicare and Medicaid Hospice Benefits may cover services at 100%, so there may be no cost to the patient, depending on eligibility. Please get in touch with us to find out more about eligibility for Medicare and Medicaid Hospice Benefits. 

Those who do not qualify for this aid may benefit from private insurance, worker’s compensation plans, and managed-care organizations. It’s also worth finding out how much it costs to pay privately. We always make sure that patients and families understand any out-of-pocket costs, which are typically minimal.

Myth Nine

“I wanted to learn more about hospice, but thought I had to wait for my doctor to bring it up first.”

Truth:

Patients can choose for us to meet with them and discuss the benefit of hospice at any time. We find that it’s better to talk about hospice as early as possible. This allows potential patients and their families to make informed decisions regarding care. We aim to demystify hospice so that our patients have freedom of choice and can benefit from our services as soon as possible. 

It is true that we cannot provide hands-on care without a doctor’s order, but you are welcome to bring up hospice with your doctor. We invite you to please contact us directly for more information.

Myth Ten

“I thought hospice meant giving up. Give up hope. Give up trying. Give up praying for a cure.”

Truth:

In order to receive hospice, a patient must be eligible, and understand that hospice focuses on comfort care, not cure. 

Hospice is for palliative care for individuals for whom the prognosis is six months or less. While we understand the value of hope, it’s critical that our patients and their families appreciate that our role involves easing end-of-life through our various therapies and services. 

Never Be Afraid to Reach Out

We hope that this information has dispelled false notions you may have had about what hospice can mean. At Sholom, we have an excellent reputation for highly personalized, palliative senior care. We are passionate about what we do and hope that this has provided you with the information to make better decisions for you and your loved ones. 

If you have further questions about hospice, we would love to hear from you so we can set your mind at rest. Our compassionate, dedicated team is here to help.

News. Events. Updates.

Keep in touch! Sign up to get interesting news and updates from Sholom, delivered to your inbox.