There comes a time when giving a patients a better quality of life becomes the priority. A patient with a prognosis of 6 months or less and who will not receive curative treatment can be referred to Hospice of Holland for end-of-life care. There is often a misconception that hospice care is designed for late term oncology patients, but in fact that is one of many life-limiting illnesses and conditions, including but not limited to:
The patient’s family may consult with the patient’s physician before making a decision. Also, a friend, clergy or even a next-door neighbor may initiate a call to Hospice of Holland. Before actual admission, however, the patient’s physician must certify that the patient is medically appropriate for hospice care. Hospice will contact the physician to obtain this verification, if the patient desires Hospice of Holland care.
The earlier a patient is referred, the more Hospice can help. Sadly, many people believe that hospice care is unavailable or inappropriate until the patient is confined to the home or bed. A great deal can be done, however, many months earlier to improve quality of life. Hospice can provide:
Early referrals improve the quality of the patient’s life. If there is no advanced directive, the patient often has the opportunity to express his or her wishes, relieving friends or family members of having to make those difficult decisions.
Families who have experienced Hospice of Holland care typically express a similar regret: “We wish we would have called hospice sooner.”