This may or may not be your first time choosing a Hospice. We believe it is important to find the right fit. Our team has put together some questions and answers that can help you explore your options. As you may have additional questions, feel free to call us to discuss them in more detail or print the brochure: How to Choose a Hospice.
How Do We know if it is Time for Hospice?
You may be researching Hospice because you doctor has suggested Hospice care, or you may be wondering if it is time to have your doctor evaluate you/your loved one for hospice care. One of the most common sentiments from families who have been helped by hospice care is that they wish they had known about hospice or been referred to hospice sooner.
Medicare has very firm criteria that Medicaide and other insurances follow for Hospice eligibility. A referral to Hospice is appropriate when:
- A patient has a terminal illness with a life expectancy of 6 months or less. This applies to all illnesses, not just cancer.
- Comfort care and symptom management become the primary focus.
- Curative treatment is no longer the patient/family choice or option.
We encourage you to use this information in a conversation with you doctor, and/or feel free to call us to discuss you situation in more detail.
Who Can Refer to Hospice?
- Referrals may be made to the Hospice program by the patient’s physician, by the patient of family, or by any caregiver.
How Can We Get on Hospice?
- All it takes is one phone call to Heart of Hospice. We can take care of the rest.
- We will coordinate with you and your doctor to begin service.
Once We Decide on Hospice, How Long Does it Take to Get Services?
- Heart of Hospice is proud of the fact that we will admit you to service on your schedule, not ours. This can include evenings, weekends, and holidays if necessary.
- Typically we admit to service in less than 24 hours, usually the same day as the referral.
What Does Hospice Cost?
- Heart of Hospice never charges patients for their services, no charge, no co-pay.
- Hospice care is covered 100% by Medicare, Medicaid, most private insurance plans, or our own charitable care.
- The availability of Medicare/Medicaid or private insurance is not a criteria for admission to Heart of Hospice.
I am in Providence hospital or my doctor works for Providence. Do I have to use their Hospice?
- No—You always have a choice of providers. We welcome Providence patients and you can keep your primary physician. Our specialized Medical Directors will work closely with them regarding your needs.
What Services Does Hospice Provide?
- Coordinated care between the patient’s personal physician and our Medical Directors
- Our Medical Director is specially trained and Board Certified in Palliative Care and Pain Management
- Scheduled visits at your convenience
- Experts in pain management and symptom management
- Counseling, on-going support and education
- Provides resources management
- Personal Care, Pampering
- Light housekeeping
- Non-Denominational visits, when requested, specializing in end of life issues
- Assists with spiritual needs
- Helps patients and their families cope with grief and loss
- Support to families for 13 months following the death of a loved one
- Physical, emotional, and social support to patients and loved ones
Medicines/Equipment and Supplies
- Related to diagnosis, comfort medicines
- Hospital beds, wheel chairs, oxygen, etc.
- Bandages, dressings, catheters, etc.
When and Where are Services Provided?
- We provide Hospice services wherever you are. Private home, nursing home, residential facility, foster home, veterans home, sometimes even in the hospital.
- Your care is directed by a registered nurse who will work with you to schedule nursing visits and coordinate other team member visits based on your individual needs and wishes.
- We are also available for call 24/7 and will make visits whenever needed.
Is your Hospice “For Profit” or a “Non-Profit”?
Heart of Hospice is proud of the fact that we are both!
- Heart of Hospice is proud to be employee owned, proud to pay taxes on the money the government pays for services, and particularly proud of our Heart of Hospice Foundation, a 501(c)3 tax deductible Non-Profit serving all Hospice patients in the Columbia Gorge.
- All Hospices were, by necessity, Non-Profits until 1982. In 1982 Medicare made Hospice a covered benefit due to the savings on Emergency Room visits and pain management. Today all Hospices receive funding for 95% of their patients from Medicare, Medicaid or private insurance.
- We set up our caregiving side as For Profit so we can focus on patient care, not fundraising. We set up our Foundation so that 100% of the donations go to patients and families! Heart of Hospice or its employees and volunteers provide all of the administrative and overhead costs of the Foundation.
How Do You Support Hospice Families and Caregivers?
- Heart of Hospice provides ongoing support and education to the patient’s loved ones throughout the Hospice journey.
- We take the time to explain what is happening, why, what to anticipate, and what loved ones can do.
- We take the time to simply listen, be a shoulder to cry on, or just give a hug.
- When the patient passes, we visit to provide immediate emotional support to loved ones and help coordinate necessary arrangements.
- We provide on-going bereavement support run by a licensed counselor specializing in grief and loss for adults and children, as long as needed.
Why Choose Heart of Hospice?
Not all Hospices are the same.
- Heart of Hospice is unique for several reasons:
- As your only local independent Hospice, we believe that the patient and family come first.
- We were started by experienced Hospice nurses who understand the unique needs of Hospice patients.
- We take the time needed with our patients and families to promote the emotional bonds and special trust that occurs between them and their Hospice team.
- We have the most specialized, Hospice-experienced staff in the Gorge.
- We emphasize Heart to Heart Care.
- We are Medicare/Medicaid Certified
- Active members of the National Hospice and Palliative Care Organization (NHPCO).
- Preferred provider under the We Honor Veterans program.
- Accredited by the Oregon Hospice Association (OHA).
- Licensed in Oregon and Washington.
- We are available to answer questions and/or discuss your particular needs without cost or obligation.