There’s No Place Like Home

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When it feels like life has turned upside down and nothing is as it was, people just want to go back home. VITAS makes that possible.

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The diagnosis of a life-limiting illness brings with it a host of questions, fears and concerns: “Will I be able to handle the pain?” “How will my family care for me?” And the most frequently heard question: “Can I stay at home?”

Faced with terminal illness, some 90 percent of patients prefer to remain in their homes, continuing the routines that make them most comfortable. Whether they live in their family home, a residential care facility or a nursing home, they want to age – and die – in place, surrounded by family, friends and the things that are meaningful to them.

Yet the perception persists that hospice means going to – or ending up in – a place. Hospice isn’t a place. Hospice is a philosophy of care; it focuses on enhancing a patient’s comfort and overall quality of life during the last months of life. By treating physical symptoms and providing pain management, as well as addressing emotional and spiritual concerns, hospice can make the dying process more meaningful for patients and their loved ones.

The VITAS interdisciplinary hospice team comes to wherever the patient calls home, bringing the clinical and compassionate expertise of a physician, nurse, hospice aide, chaplain, social worker and/or volunteer – whatever the patient, family and plan of care call for.

What if a patient’s symptoms – pain, nausea or confusion, for example – worsen or become difficult to control? Even then, hospice can offer options to help the patient remain at home. During those times, VITAS provides Intensive Comfort Care® – a service that puts a trained clinician at the bedside up to 24 hours a day. It means a hospice patient doesn’t have to choose between the comforts of home and the round-the-clock care of hospitalization.

VITAS brings hospice home.

Provided by VITAS Innovative Hospice Care® of the San Francisco Bay Area. For more information call 1.800.337.2058 or go to VitasBayArea.com.

Posted: February 2013

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