The goal of hospice is to relieve physical and emotional distress, allowing patients to retain their dignity and remain comfortable. We do this by offering comprehensive services for patients with dementia.
1. Individualized care plan – As dementia progresses, patients lose the ability to express their needs. Big Bend Hospice will design a plan that addresses pain, hydration, nutrition, skin care, recurrent infection, and agitation—all common problems associated with dementia.
2. Care for patients wherever they live – in their homes, long-term care facilities, or assisted living communities. If symptoms become too difficult to manage at home, inpatient hospice services can provide round-the-clock care until the patient is able to return home.
3. Coordinated care at every level – A plan of care is developed with the advice and consent of the patient’s neurologist or other physicians. A team manager ensures that information flows between all physicians, nurses, social workers, and, at the patient’s request, spiritual care. In addition, hospice coordinates and supplies all medications, medical supplies, and medical equipment related to the diagnosis to ensure patients have everything they need.
4. Emotional and spiritual assistance – Hospice has the resources to help patients maintain their emotional and spiritual well-being.
5. Caregiver education and training – The family caregiver is vital in helping hospice professionals care for the patient. As the patient gets weaker, symptoms increase, and communication becomes more difficult. We relieve families’ concerns by educating them on how best to care for their loved ones.
6. Help with difficult decisions – Hospice helps families make tough choices that impact the patient’s condition and quality of life—for example, whether to give antibiotics for a recurring infection.
7. A Big Bend Hospice nurse by phone 24/7 – Even the most experienced caregivers will have questions and concerns. BBH provides trained hospice clinicians around the clock to answer questions or dispatch a member of the team to the bedside.
8. Emotional and spiritual assistance – Hospice meets the needs of loved ones along with those of the patient.
9. Financial assistance – Although hospice services are covered by Medicare, Medicaid, and private insurance, families may have financial concerns brought about by their loved one’s extensive illness. Social workers can assist families with financial planning and finding financial assistance during hospice care. After a death, they can help grieving families find financial assistance through human services if needed.
10. Respite care – Caring for a loved one with an end-stage illness can cause tremendous stress. Hospice offers up to five days of care at our Margaret Z. Dozier House for the patient in order to give the caregiver a break. Respite care can also be provided in the home with volunteer support. Trained volunteers can provide caregivers with a few hours each week to tend to other pressing matters, run errands, or just a peaceful break away from the home. Caregivers need to be cared for too.
11. Bereavement services – The hospice team works with surviving loved ones for a full year after a death to help them express and cope with their grief in their own productive way.
If you or someone you know would benefit from hospice, call (850) 878-5310 or fill out the form below.