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Old 08-14-2011, 11:27 AM   #4
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Location: charlotte, nc, usa
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Re: When can Hospice start?

Nina, as I have said my Mom still walks and feed herself with cues. Her ability to communicate is limited but it has been that way for over 2 years now. Yet she qualifies for Hospice. The Nurse and Social Worker frequently walk with her in the court yard to do their evaluations

Hospice has nothing to do with wanting a loved one to die. It doesn't even mean that they are going to die imminently. It means that they have a terminal condition and you have opted for palliative care rather than aggressive medical treatment because they are not going to return to their previous healthy state of being. It is about getting them the addition medical attention that is appropriate for where they are in the moment.
When I took Mom to her regular doctor for blood in her urine they wanted extensive test to determine the source of the blood. Is it a tumor or obstruction. They want to rule out the worse case. The Hospice nurse will order a short run of antibiotics for potential cystitis and forgo those extensive test because we are not going to treat those more invasive problems if they exist. You don't have to argue with a specialist that there is no need for what he thinks is necessary. Most of the medical profession is geared to find the worst if it exist and aggressively treat the underlying problem. Palliative care treats the symptoms to make the patient more comfortable.

My Mom is in the later stages of Alzheimer's. I am not going to aggressively treat a cancer if she should have one. I am not going to treat her as if she was a health 60 year old with many good years ahead of her. The Hospice philosophy gives you the support and guidance to make the decisions that need to be made to make your loved one as comfortable as possible without unnecessary procedures. Yes, it does take accepting that your loved one has a terminal illness. It also takes a decision that you are not going to aggressively search and treat other conditions but instead attempt to keep your loved one comfortable and pain free.

Love, deb

PS... as for what others might think I do what is best for me and my Mom and they can think what they want to