Frequently Asked Questions
What is hospice care?
Hospice is not a place but high-quality care that enables patients and families to focus on living as fully as possible despite a life-limiting illness. Hospice patients and families are best served when this model of care is provided as soon as you and your doctor feel curative care is no longer the best option. Hospice provides pain management, symptom control, psychosocial support, and spiritual care to patients and their families when a cure is not possible. These programs combine the highest level of quality medical care with the emotional and spiritual support that families need most when facing a serious illness or the end of life. Hospice care is best utilized when we can provide care as soon as possible.
When is it appropriate to seek hospice care?
A medical doctor’s prognosis for the patient is six months or less to live. When the primary care physician and the patient determine there is no cure for the disease/illness and the patient wishes to shift treatment from cure to comfort and quality of life, hospice is an option.
What if there is a new treatment that might cure my disease?
Wonderful! Hospice can be canceled at any time.
How do I pay for hospice care?
In most cases, including patients with Medicare coverage, the entire bill will be paid by your insurance carrier. However, for Medi-Cal and private insurance patients, there may be co-payments, deductibles, or share-of-cost expenses that are not covered. In these instances, you will be contacted by the Hinds Hospice business office. However, Hinds Hospice will not turn away patients based on their ability to pay.
Can I keep my doctor?
At Hinds Hospice our goal is to collaborate with you, your caregivers, and your physician. You are welcome to continue seeing your primary care physician while in hospice.
What if my family cannot take care of me?
The team will work with you to ensure your comfort and safety as well as that of your family. If they are unable to care for you at home, the team will help with placement at one of our contracted nursing facilities, or possibly you can be moved to the Hinds Hospice Home.
What if I get better?
Often, patients starting hospice care feel better because their symptoms are managed. However, in some cases, people do improve, and hospice is no longer appropriate for them. If physician believes you will live longer than the six-month requirement, we will discuss with you, your caregivers, our team, and your physician if you should stop receiving hospice care.
Is hospice care only for the last few days or weeks of life?
No, hospice care can begin any time after the physician determines that the patient’s life expectancy is six months or less.
What if my home is a nursing facility?
Hospice guidelines require that a hospice have a signed contract with a nursing facility before providing care to any of its residents. This is a really good thing because when hospice and nursing facilities work together, quality care can be delivered wherever you call home.
What if I live in assisted living?
Regulations in an assisted living facility require that the owner obtain a hospice waiver for you to receive hospice care. Many of the facilities in our area have chosen to obtain this waiver and provide excellent care. Just ask the management if this is in place. If they have any questions, tell them to call us and we will coordinate care.
What if I need medications and special equipment?
Any medications or equipment needed for your illness are covered under your hospice insurance benefit.
How can I get this service for myself or a family member?
Anyone can ask for assistance by calling (559) 317-6010, and a nurse will schedule a hospice evaluation.
Can I change my mind about hospice care?
Absolutely. You may discontinue hospice care and begin again at a later date.
More Questions? Call us at (559) 317-6010
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