Good article on end of life decisions and the importance of good Hospice type care toward the end. Many people wait to the very end to discuss or to utilize the care to prevent unnecessary suffering and discomfort
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The article, Shedding New Light On Hospice Care: No Need To Wait For The ‘Brink Of Death’, by Judith Graham states
“A few weeks ago, Kathy Brandt’s 86-year-old mother was hospitalized in Florida after a fall. After rushing to her side, Brandt asked for a consult with a palliative care nurse.
“I wanted someone to make sure my mother was on the right medications,” Brandt said.
For all her expertise — Brandt advises end-of-life organizations across the country — she was taken aback when the nurse suggested hospice care for her mother, who has advanced chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, kidney disease and a rapid, irregular heartbeat.
“I was like — really?” Brandt remembered saying, struggling with shock.
It’s a common reaction. Although hospices now serve more than 1.4 million people a year, this specialized type of care, meant for people with six months or less to live, continues to evoke resistance, fear and misunderstanding.
“The biggest misperception about hospice is that it’s ‘brink-of-death care,’” said Patricia Mehnert, a longtime hospice nurse and interim chief executive officer of TRU Community Care, the first hospice in Colorado.”
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