What is Hospice Care?

Published: Monday, November 15, 2021
Susan Bennett
Executive Director for Hospice of NGMC

Unless you have had a terminally ill person in your life, you may not be familiar with the definition of Hospice. Hospice care focuses on the quality of life for people and their caregivers in the last phases of illness to live as fully and comfortably as possible. Many of us assume that we will always have time to care for our aging parents, friends or family members when they become ill, but sometimes that may be too much for an individual to go through as a caregiver. 

The focus of hospice care is to help patients and their loved ones make the most of the time they have together when curative treatment options are no longer available.

When should I consider hospice care?

Hospice care becomes appropriate when a person is diagnosed with a life-limiting illness and can support patients and their families for months, even years, depending upon the illness.

What is the purpose of hospice care?

The goal of hospice is to focus on the quality of life, symptom management and comfort care, instead of repeated visits to a physician’s office or the hospital.

Where is hospice care provided?

Hospice care is provided wherever a patient resides, whether in their own home, the home of a loved one, personal care home, assisted living facility, or long-term care facility.

How do you know if hospice care is right for you and your family?

People with an advanced illness should discuss with their support system and doctor to decide when hospice care should begin.

Studies have shown that Hospice tends to lengthen life. Potential Hospice patients are usually dealing with a large amount of stress and pain. Once admitted, the entire Hospice team treats all physical, spiritual, and emotional needs.

What other services are offered by hospice?

While some may think Hospice only provides one service, comfort to terminally ill patients, many hospice providers offer other services that help family members and their patients. 

Hospice of NGMC provides: 

  • Advance Care Planning – This program incorporates person-centered care into patients’ healthcare choices. It involves talking with your loved ones about what you desire if you become seriously ill.  
  • Camp Braveheart – Hospice of NGMC offers a day camp for children and youth who have experienced the death of a close friend or family member.
  • Comfort Care & Symptom Management – Care management for individuals of all ages, from newborns to senior adults.
  • Complementary Services – Touch therapy, Therapeutic music, storytelling, pet therapy, therapeutic art and more designed to enhance quality of life through activities that support communication, aide with relaxation, help build memories and encourage creativity and fun.
  • Grief Support for adults and youth – Our Hospice of NGMC Grief Support Team offers services to help adultschildren and larger community navigate the journey of grief and find a path to healing
  • In-Home Palliative Care – When patients are homebound and faced with a serious but not life-threatening illness, our in-home palliative care team provides specialized care to treat symptoms and support the patient and family.
  • Veteran Support – Hospice of NGMC is a proud Level 5 partner of We Honor Veterans, which gives our team the tools and skills to best serve and honor our veterans.

Interested to know more about what all Hospice can offer your loved one?

Hospice of Northeast Georgia Medical Center would be honored to be chosen to walk through this journey with you or your family member.

Call 770-219-8888 for more information, or visit nghs.com/hospice

Consider donating to support Hospice at NGMC

Did you know that donors help us provide important services for patients and families at Hospice of NGMC? They also help ensure that we can accept all patients, regardless of their ability to pay. Giving to Hospice of Northeast Georgia Medical Center helps families right here in our region spend their precious time together, not in and out of doctors offices.