Remember: Saint Verena Hospice Care is here to HELP.

The above changes can be very shocking and overwhelming and we have been specially trained to help patients and their loved ones with the care of a terminal diagnosis.  

  • Our nurses are specially trained to perform the comprehensive assessments gently and with compassion and dignity for the patient.
  • Our social workers are specially trained to ask questions and guide conversations for maximal help and to provide resources for resolving issues.
  • Our spiritual counselors are specially trained to discuss religious concerns surrounding dying and death.
  • Our bereavement counselors are specially trained to assess the family and friends surrounding the patient and delivering resources to aid and guide the family life following a loved one's death.
  • Our health aides are soothing and accepting.  Bathing and changing clothing and bed linens are what our aides are there for! We don't get embarrassed by anything, and we love what we do.  
  • Our DME delivers direct to your door and will assemble the equipment and teach you how to use them.
  • Our pharmacy delivers direct to your door, in sometimes as little as two hours.  Daily medications are supplied in "blister packs" which organize the medication into dosages based on the doctor's prescription, ensuring medication reconciliation.

My Loved One is a Hospice Patient... Now What?

Once your loved one has been admitted to a hospice care program, be it in a personal residence or assisted living facility or the like, things will change.  Here compiled are some changes to expect.

  • The terminal diagnosis will be talked about.  A lot.  Sometimes you will feel that it is the only thing you talk and think about.
  • You will be sad/angry/upset/numb.  The gamut of emotions is expected and normal.  
  • Your family will become very involved in the life of the patient./ Your family will not be involved in the life of the patient./ Or in between. You may be surprised by your loved one's family response: some families rush to the bedside for final moments while others are not comfortable with the dying process and push away.  These are all normal responses, It is important to clearly explain your expectations as the caregiver and to lay no blame.
  • Your relationship with the patient will change.  They will still be your spouse, parent, child, or friend, but as a caregiver, the partnership is different.  As the disease progresses, they will need you to care for them in ways you may not have expected, like seeing them cry, hearing them talk about past memories, administering medication, even bathing them, spoon-feeding them, or changing their incontinence care items.  They may not be available for you to rely on them as you once did.  They may have been the one you tasked with simple household items, like taking out the trash or doing laundry or the shopping,, or being the person who provided an income, the person you laughed with and planned for the future with.   It is important to be honest with yourself and your loved one as much as possible while also being cognizant, sensitive, and respectful of their perspective.
  • The hospice care team will be visiting your loved one. A lot,  With Saint Verena, the care team will visit the patient frequently.  Preliminary assessments are conducted within five (5) days of admittance, and weekly visits begin immediately.  You will need to communicate with the hospice care team about what days and times are optimal for your loved one's care.  Your loved one or a person reliable and knowledgeable of the patient's condition must be available to talk with the hospice care team for up to two hours or more  per visit,. 
  • Durable Medical Equipment (DME) will be delivered, as needed.  Room for a hospital bed, suction machines, nebulizers, wheelchairs, and other equipment will likely be needed as the decline progresses.
  • Medications will be delivered as needed.  Having a safe, secure, accessible place for the medications to be stored is needed. Also, having adequate lighting and vision care items (like reading glasses or a magnifying glass) are necessarily to ensure proper dosage and administration.

Saint Verena is here to help!