HRMC Community Hospice Celebrates Hospice Month
December 02, 2015
Huron, S.D. – November is National Hospice Month, a time when care providers across the country are working to educate people about high quality end-of-life care.
“Hospice. Helps. Everyone.” is the theme this year for National Hospice/Palliative Care Month, chosen to encourage the community to focus on what is most important in life – especially when it comes to times of facing end-of-life issues. HRMC Community Hospice has several activities planned to promote hospice and assist families who have lost a loved one to cope during the holidays.
“Choosing hospice care does not mean giving up hope. Hospice patients and their families find hope in the fact that they are able to stay in their own homes, be surrounded by their loved ones, remain active as long as possible, and have their symptoms under control,” said Elizabeth Watson, director of HRMC’s Community Hospice. “We want the community to know that there’s help available that brings comfort, love and respect when they’re most needed – in the place and way they choose to receive it. In fact, a recent study from the National Hospice and Palliative Care Organization has found that patients who receive hospice care actually live an average of 29 days longer than those with a similar diagnosis who do not choose hospice care.”
The first step is understanding what hospice care is:
- Hospice isn’t a place. It’s a type of care that focuses on living … living as fully as possible, up until the end of life. Huron area residents can receive HRMC hospice care in the home or in Sunquest Healthcare Center or Violet Tschetter Memorial Home.
- Hospice brings comfort, love and respect to the patients and families they care for.
- Hospice care involves a team-oriented approach to care that includes expert medical care, pain-and-symptom management and emotional and spiritual support. All care is expressly tailored to the patient’s needs and wishes.
- Hospice offers the services and support that everyone wants when coping with a serious or life-limiting illness.
The goal of this type of care is to treat the person instead of the disease, and focus on the family caregivers, not just the individual. The quality of life is emphasized, not its duration.
Hospice offers anticipatory grief services to help the patient and family cope with their feelings related to the terminal illness. Bereavement services are provided to offer support up to one year after the loss of the loved one.
As part of HRMC’s celebration of Hospice month, a Hospice Tree of Memories, decorated with red lights and ornaments, will be on display in the main lobby of Huron Regional Medical Center and Fair City Foods throughout the holiday season. Visitors can stop by to pick up a mail-in gift card to donate or get more information about the program. Donors and memorials are recognized on a display board near the tree. Materials on caregiving and grieving through the holidays are also available for the public at the Tree of Memories display. Hospice ornaments for $20 also make a great Christmas gift and are available at the HRMC hospice office.
These local efforts are part of a broader national campaign launched by National Hospice and Palliative Care Organization encouraging people to learn more about hospice before they are faced with a healthcare crisis. In most cases, hospice care is available at little or no cost to the patient under Medicare, Medicaid, most private insurance plans, HMOs and other managed health organizations.
For more information about hospice care, call HRMC’s home health and community hospice office at 353-6520 or visit www.huronregional.org. Stories showing the many ways hospice makes more special moments possible can be found at www.momentsoflife.org.
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