National Hospice Month
Thank you all hospice personnel for everything you do!
The Facts and Figures of Hospice
All data on this page is sourced from NHPCO 2016 Facts and Figures report
Map of Services by State (figure 1)
Hospice is a service for people dealing with terminal illness who have been given a prognosis of 6months or less. Arizona consistantly has higher than average utilization of hospice services with 55-57% of all elligible medicare recipiants electing hospice.
Principle Diagnosis (figure 2)
The Principle Diagnosis is the illness that is deemed to be the most contributory to an individual's terminal prognosis. The symptoms related to the principle diagnosis serve as the focal point of the hospice care team's plan of care as they work to ensure that the person is as comfortable as possible.
Location of Death (figure 3)
A common myth is that hospice is a place that people go to receive care. The truth is that only 15% of hospice patients receive care in an actual hospice facility. The majority of people receiving hospice care receive it in the comfort of their own home.All statistics used in the above are from NHPCO Facts and Figures 2016. See full list of facts and figures here.
Myths and Facts about Hospice
In the absence of facts, myth rushes in...
- Myth: Hospice is a place
- Fact: Hospice care takes place wherever the patient calls home, including skilled nursing and assisted living facilities.
- Myth: Hospice is only for patients who have given up hope and are close to death.
- Fact: Hospice is about living life as fully as possible. In fact, patients and families receive the greatest benefit when hospice care is started early.
- Myth: Families will have to pay a lot of money for hospice care.
- Fact: Hospice care, including medications, medical supplies, and durable equipment related to the hospice diagnosis, is a Medicare benefit. Most private insurers also cover hospice.
- Myth: Hospice is only for cancer patients.
- Fact: A large number of hospice patients have a diagnosis other than cancer, such as cardiovascular or chronic lung diseases.
- Myth: Since hospice care is only available for six months, delay enrollment as long as possible.
- Fact: Hospice patients can stay on hospice care as long as medically necessary while the disease takes its normal course. Hospice eligibility requires a prognosis of less than six months, but patients who survive that period can come on and off hospice care, or be re-certified for hospice care as necessary.
- Myth: Hospice gives the patient so much medicine that the patient is out of touch, sleeps too much and becomes addicted to pain medication.
- Fact: One of the goals of hospice care is to make the patient comfortable, pain free and as alert as possible.
Facts are stuborn things... Ronald Reagan
- Myth: Hospice uses morphine which causes the patient to die sooner.
- Fact: Hospice uses morphine and other pain medications to keep the patient comfortable. It does not cause death.
- Myth: Hospice stops feeding patients and they become dehydrated and starve to death.
- Fact: Hospice encourages patients to eat and drink only what they want. It is natural for some patients to not feel hunger or thirst. This is part of the dying process as the body shuts down.
- Myth: Hospice is only for the sick family member.
- Fact: The focus of hospice is not only on medical care, but on the emotional, social and spiritual needs of the entire family. We assist family members and caregivers during the illness and offer bereavement support during the thirteen months following death.
- Myth: It is a difficult process to begin hospice care.
- Fact: It only takes one phone call. Agape Hospice takes cares of everything else. We will work with the patient’s physician to determine if hospice care is appropriate and to arrange for services to begin.
Agape Hospice Stories
True stories, by Agape Hospice
A Non Medical Hospice Intervention
I can’t even begin to touch the tip of the iceberg to tell you all what you mean to us. I can’t even put my thoughts into words.Full Story
On that day, Mary was not dying on hospice; she was living...I could not be prouder of Team Agape and the work they do every day for patients just like Mary.Full Story
Patsy was ecstatic over the idea of having one more date night with her true love. She immediately began giving Samira some additional information to help Samira in her planning...Full Story
Once again, Monday arrived. It was a pleasant Spring morning in Tucson, and April, our Administrator and lead Compliance Officer, was checking in online to view our account home page in the Joint Commission’s website...Full Story