Hospice has and always will be a special healthcare option for patients and families who are faced with a terminal illness. Hospice provides palliative (comfort) care when curative treatment is no longer the patient’s choice. In addition, care takes place in the patient’s home or a home-like setting, and serves patients of all ages.
Our belief is that quality of life is as important as length of life. That’s why hospice views the patient, family and disease process from a holistic perspective addressing the physical, social, emotional and spiritual needs of each patient and family.
Meeting the needs of the patient and family are a top priority at Heart of Hospice. The entire family unit (patient, family and caregiver) is an essential part of hospice care. Family and/or caregivers are taught skills to care for the patient in the home. The patient, family and caregivers are an essential part of the decision-making process.
Range of Services
Hospice care provides a wide range of services, including: Nursing Care, Medical Social Services, Physician Services, Patient Counseling (dietary, spiritual, other), General Inpatient Care, Medical Supplies and Equipment, Medications for Pain Control and Symptom Management, Home Health Aide Services, Homemaker Services, Therapy (physical, occupational, and speech), Respite Inpatient Care, and Family Bereavement Counseling.
Heart of Hospice Medical Director directs the Plan of Care and regularly consults with the hospice team on each patient. The Medical Director may serve as a consultant to the patient’s personal physician in the areas of pain and symptom management.
Nursing services include assessment and management of pain and symptoms as well as personal care. Heart of Hospice nurses are trained to evaluate pain and symptoms and to provide services that alleviate the suffering associated with terminal illness. Our nurses and Hospice Aides provide patient and family education on care giving as well as end-of-life issues. Our nurses make regularly scheduled visits to patients. Support by the hospice team is available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.
Licensed medical social workers enhance the meaning and quality of a patient’s life by providing emotional support to the patient and family, counseling in dealing with end-of-life issues, helping with advanced directives, and assisting in understanding Medicare, Medicaid or insurance benefits. Social workers also help patients and families in finding and coordinating community resources.
Spiritual Care Counselors
The pain experienced by a hospice patient can be emotional and spiritual as well as physical. Patients and family members often find it helpful to speak with a counselor about the questions and anxiety associated with the end of life. Heart of Hospice counselors also help patients maintain contact with their faith communities, as requested. All Heart of Hospice employees respect the spiritual and lifestyle choices of every patient and family.
Volunteers work in harmony with the professional staff to provide patient and family support. As a friend who pledges to be with them through the uncertainties of the weeks ahead, volunteers offer patients and families a listening ear, a hand to hold, and the presence of a caring heart. Services offered by the volunteers are as varied as the needs of the patients and families. Heart of Hospice volunteers also provide support in the office and with community education. All volunteers receive specialized training before assignment to patients and families. Learn more about volunteering.
Heart of Hospice’s concern does not end with the death of the patient. Our Bereavement services are on-going and open, even if not on Hospice. Our Bereavement Services follow family and caregivers after the patient’s death. Bereavement services may include personal visits, listening to the stories of the survivors, answering questions, providing helpful information concerning the grief process, and offering periodic opportunities for group support and memorial gatherings. Bereavement Services provide information and referrals to area resources when needed. For more information on our Bereavement Services, click here.