Frequently Asked Questions
Q: How many family members and friends does it take to provide hospice care at home?
A: There is no set number. While family and friends do deliver the care, Heart of America Hospice can provide volunteers to assist with errands and provide respite for primary caregivers. Hospice staff make regular visits and are available to answer medical questions, provide support and teach caregivers 24 hours a day.
Q: Do I need to get any special equipment or make changes my home before I enter hospice?
A: No. Heart of America Hospice will assess your needs and help make arrangements to obtain any equipment needed to provide for your care.
Q: What happens if I outlive my prognosis?
A: Sometimes, when pain and symptoms are under control, people live longer than their original prognoses. As long as your physician recertifies you as eligible for hospice at the end of each six-month benefit period, unlimited benefit periods are available to meet your needs.
Q: Will I still be able to make my own decisions regarding my care?
A: Yes, you and your family are in charge of your care.
Q: What is your success rate in battling pain?
A: Extremely high. Using some combination of medications, counseling and therapies, most people will attain a level of comfort that is acceptable to them.
Q: Will medications prevent me from being able to talk or know what's happening?
A: Usually not. It is the goal of Heart of America Hospice to keep patients as pain free and alert as possible. By constantly consulting with the patients, we have been successful in reaching this goal.
Q: Must someone be with me at all times?
A: In the early weeks of care, it's usually not necessary for someone to constantly be with a patient. As time goes on, however, we recommend patients not be left unattended, as for many patients dying alone is one of their greatest fears.
Q: If I show signs of recovery, may leave hospice?
A: Certainly. If your condition improves and the disease seems to be in remission, you can be discharged hospice to resume aggressive therapy or return to normal daily life. If you need to return to hospice care later, Medicare and most private insurers will continue hospice benefits.