What do you do when the Hospice patient improves?

Every so often a person comes onto the Hospice program and their condition improves. When a person’s condition stabilizes Hospice takes them off the program until they begin to decline again. How great is that?

I think one of the reasons people are so hesitant to enter the hospice program is because by doing so they have to acknowledge that death is approaching. We have to let go of the idea that other people die but certainly not me or anyone close to me. Hospice is known to care for people who are dying. Actually, Hospice cares for people who are LIVING their final challenge. If people would come on to the hospice program earlier there would be more people “graduating” from the program to live a bit longer.

How does that improvement work? A person may have been in pain from their disease progression and Hospice, being the expert in pain and comfort management, addresses the pain and reduces it. Life looks better, is easier, and their condition stabilizes. Hospice care involves nutritional recommendations, emotional support for patient and family, and generally neutralizes the fear that people have surrounding approaching death. Everyone relaxes a little and the patient’s condition stabilizes.

When Hospice care enters a family’s experience that family is no longer alone. There is support during one of the biggest challenges in life. Some people do stabilize for a while when they enter the Hospice program. Truthfully, most don’t. Most people continue their decline toward death, only with Hospice professionals by their side, they have support and guidance to counteract the isolation and fear that is otherwise present.

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