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Support > Palliative and Hospice Care

Last update: 03/24/2014

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Palliative and Hospice Care | In the News | Resources

Also see Pain Management

The goal of palliative care is to achieve the best possible quality of life for patients and their families when the patients disease is not responsive to curative treatment. 

The goals include control of pain and of other symptoms, and to find solutions to psychological, social and spiritual problems. 
Palliative care might also apply to patients and families earlier in the course of the illness. 

Palliative care affirms life and the  process of dying. It neither hastens nor postpones death. It provides relief from pain, and integrates psychological and spiritual aspects of care. It provides for living as active and full a life as possible. Finally, it offers support to the family during the illness and in bereavement.  Typically, hospice care facilities specialize in palliative care.
 

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Hospice Myths and Realities http://bit.ly/1m2IepI

How to find hospice care in your area?  

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Hospice directory by State.org: http://bit.ly/1fVeCoZ

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Agency on Aging

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American Cancer Society

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Hospice - Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services http://go.cms.gov/1djv8nN

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United Way

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Visiting Nurse Association

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Yellow Pages and look up Hospice care providers

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Your place of worship. 

See Resources below.

Obtain a list of licensed agencies by contacting

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Your State's hospice organization 

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Department of Health or Social Services

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The Blue Pages of your Phone book for other resources in your area.

Resources:

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Barriers to Pain Management:
Caregiver Perceptions and Pain Talk by Hospice Interdisciplinary Teams http://1.usa.gov/1oVLV1Z
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Hospice Myths and Realities http://bit.ly/1m2IepI
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Download Your State's Advance Directives -  (scroll down to states) http://bit.ly/1a50vdr
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Preparing for Approaching Death in Hospice Hands  www.npr.org 
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When to Let Go?  Treating cancer sometimes involves walking a fine line between 
helping and hurting patients. scienceblogs.com 
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How far would you go to sustain the life of someone you love, or your own? http://to.pbs.org/eNFp1a 

An excellent Frontline piece about end of life issues, and the tradeoffs of modern medicine.
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When do you move from living to dying?

Nov 03 2010 Published by Pal MD under Medical Musings, Medicine http://bit.ly/bPhDS4 

Toby writes: Good post!! Recommend to all patients and caregivers!
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Letting Go: What should medicine do when it can’t save your life?
by Atul Gawande http://nyr.kr/di8Mqi

JoJo writes: Amazing article thanks. Aug 26th my 85 year old mother had a major stroke 10 days after getting a pace-maker. Dayle called me at work and I spoke to the paramedics as they were transporting her. At the hospital my sister and I were questioned about DNR's etc as we contacted my brother who lives 3000 miles away. You think you are ready to deal with these tragedies in our lives but we realized as a family we had not discussed Mum's wishes.
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Advance Directives: Five Wishes:  http://bit.ly/362YEO 

Five Wishes lets your family and doctors know:

bullet Who you want to make health care decisions for you when you can't make them.
bullet The kind of medical treatment you want or don't want.
bullet How comfortable you want to be.
bullet How you want people to treat you.
bullet What you want your loved ones to know.

Link to free presentation guide PDF
 
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Very good NY Times article on hospice care http://bit.ly/4Qu0y8

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Decide for Yourself: A guide to Healthcare Directives: haponline.org pdf 
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 'Futile Care:' What to Do When Your Patient Insists on Chemotherapy That Likely Won’t Help
James Khatcheressian, MD Assistant Professor of Medicine  cancernetwork.com 
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What Is Hospice Care? ACS
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Myths about Hospice Care hospicefoundation.org 
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How do I find Hospice Care? ACS
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Voluntary Death: A Comparison of Terminal Dehydration and Physician-Assisted Suicide,  Annals of Internal Medicine  ACP
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Hospice Education Institute/Hospice Link hospiceworld.org
 
Telephone Number: 800-331-1620 or 860-767-1620 Fax Number: 860-767-2746
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Hospice Foundation of America - www.hospicefoundation.org 
 
Telephone Number: 800-854-3402 
Advocate for hospice care. Provides public education and information. Lists hospices in a geographical area. 
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Joint Commission on Accreditation of Healthcare Organizations (JCAHO) jcaho.org 
 
Telephone Number: 630-792-5000 | Fax Number: 630-792-5005
Provides information on accredited hospice agencies.
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Medicare medicare.gov 
 
Telephone Number: 800-633-4227
Answers questions about Medicare benefits and coverage for all Medicare recipients.
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National Association for Home Care (NAHC) - www.nahc.org 
 
Telephone Number: 202-547-7424 | Fax Number: 202-547-3540
Provides a state-by-state database of phone numbers for state home care and hospice agencies.
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National Hospice and Palliative Care Organizations (NHPCO's) nhpco.org 
 
Telephone Number: 800-658-8898 (Hospice Helpline)
Provides information about hospice programs in your area.
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Hospice Link - Telephone Number: 800-331-1620 
 
Maintains a computerized and continually updated directory of hospice and palliative care programs in the United States; it also provides general information about the principles and practices of good hospice care.
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Visiting Nurse Associations of America (VNA) vnaa.org
 
Telephone Number: 1-800-426-2547 - call for the VNA in your area
Provides services such as skilled nursing and mental health care, hospice care, and home health care.
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Australia Palliative Care Resources
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A rush to dying “terminal agitation;” by James Salwitz, MD

End-of-Life experts call it “terminal agitation;” a burst of activity, usually with confusion, and perhaps pain, at the end of life.

Families must be informed that when the final hours arrive, death may take this form. Emotionally, friends and loved ones must be ready. Everyone needs to talk and understand, ahead of time, that the last days or hours of life may not be easy. Our bodies do not pass easily from this life, and may flail. In your heart, be ready.

When such an event happens, good communication with the patient’s doctor and hospice staff can help everyone cope with what is happening. In addition, they need to understand that the medicines or methods that doctors or nurses use in an attempt to give comfort are not themselves fatal.
 
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Hospice medical care for dying patients

Very difficult to read, but excellent article on end of life care and hospice--warning- not for the faint hearted-- but does raise issues to think about
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* Sunrise Rounds 2013:
Chemo in palliative perspective http://bit.ly/18EpqJ3


In the News: 

 

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Referring to hospice - to save the doctor too

In some circumstances it does not take an advanced degree to list the reasons why “hospice,” [can be] the best answer:

"Better coordination of medication, improved pain and symptom control, family counseling and coordination, vital home equipment like a hospital bed, shower chair or commode, 24hour home support, an alternative to hospitalization, may actually live longer, than with aggressive intervention, bereavement therapy."
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End of life issues: The Truth About Hospice Care http://bit.ly/psZOSy

 

 
Disclaimer:  The information on Lymphomation.org is not intended to be a substitute for 
professional medical advice or to replace your relationship with a physician.
For all medical concerns,  you should always consult your doctor. 
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