The last nine months have shone a spotlight on the importance of advanced care planning as families struggled to care for loved ones suddenly facing a life-limiting illness and unable to express their healthcare wishes. That makes this November, which is National Hospice and Palliative Care Month, an important opportunity to encourage our community to learn about these medical specialties most have heard about but too few understand.
Hospice is unique in that it offers an interdisciplinary team approach to treatment that includes expert medical care, comprehensive pain management and emotional and spiritual care. Caring for the whole person during end-of-life allows the team to address each patient’s unique needs and challenges. In addition to caring for patients, hospice offers services for families and loved ones that provide emotional support and advice to help family members become confident caregivers and adjust to the future with grief support for up to a year.
Hospices are some of the best providers of community-based supportive care, also known as palliative care. The goal of supportive care is to improve quality of life and relief from pain. It can be provided at any time during an illness – during and after treatment, from diagnosis on.
The best time to make plans for the kind of care you or a loved one would want is before you are faced with a medical crisis. One of the most frequent comments we hear from families is, “Why did we wait so long before calling hospice?”
We are committed to serve and deliver high-quality person-centered care to anyone who is facing a serious or life-limiting illness. We will provide physical, emotional, and spiritual support all while supporting your wishes and plan of care. We are there when you need us. Call 410-987-2003.
–Michael J. Brady, Acting President and CEO, Hospice of the Chesapeake