Comfort Care At Pleasantville Hospice
Facing a life-limiting illness or injury can be scary, lonely and miserable. The purpose of comfort (or hospice) care is to ensure the patient is as comfortable as possible. When people think of hospice care, they often misunderstand the intent, believing that the family or patient has given up on life. That just is not true. The ultimate goal of comfort care is to improve the quality of life for both our patients and their families, regardless of diagnosis.
What is Comfort Care
Comfort care is a form of medical care focusing on relieving symptoms and optimizing comfort as our patients undergo the dying process. During this process, families are in need of support as well as our patients.
When a patient can no longer benefit from active treatment, comfort care can allow a better quality of life while respecting the dying person’s’ wishes. Avoiding suffering, having your end of life wishes followed, and being treated with respect while dying are common hopes.
Unique Comfort Care
Unlike most forms of medical care, comfort care does not seek to cure or treat illnesses or disease. Instead, it simply focuses on easing the effects of the symptoms of the disease as patients reach the end of their lives. Comfort care providers assist with pain and symptom management, including management of pain and discomfort from chronic diseases.
At Pleasantville Hospice, our comfort care hospice focuses on the physical, mental, spiritual and practical care of the patient. By definition, comfort care is not only about providing care, but it is also about curtailing treatments that produce more discomfort than comfort.
How Is Comfort Care Different Than Hospice or Palliative Care
Comfort care is a synonym for hospice and palliative care. It is a team-based, individualized medical care plan, including emotional, psychological, and spiritual care. This team is generally made up of skilled professionals including, physicians, skilled nurses, social workers, therapists, chaplains, home health aides, trained volunteers, and bereavement support and counseling.
Comfort care when used for hospice is centered on the patient and family, optimizing the quality of life by preventing and treating suffering. Comfort care as hospice palliative care addresses physical, intellectual, emotional, social and spiritual needs.
Even in hospice care, the death of a loved one is painful to endure. Comfort care professionals offer to counsel and help the family take care of after-death responsibilities.
Studies have shown that patients who use comfort care hospice can live longer than patients with similar illnesses who don’t receive hospice care. Some patients even experience improvement in their health.
Empowers Patient and Family
Comfort care professionals allow patients to live their last days with dignity, not hooked up to a bunch of machines. Care is the operative word in Comfort Care Professionals. Comfort care professionals assist patients in being active, easing their pain, and making them as comfortable as possible.
Care can be provided in the patient’s home or at a hospice facility. We understand that being cared for in the comfort of your own home allows more freedom and familiarity. It will enable a more intimate setting for family and friends.
We believe that comfort care also empowers the family. Instead of hospital visits and dealing with hospital bureaucracy, families can focus on what’s important: spending time with their loved ones.
Reduced Medical Bills
Let’s face it. Hospital visits are expensive. Palliative and comfort care has been shown to increase patients’ satisfaction with their care received as well as saving on medical expenses by reducing the need for hospitalizations and trips to the emergency room. With hospice care, hospital visits are limited, if at all. Medicare, Medicaid and private insurance cover the cost of hospice care.
When Should Comfort Care Be Considered
Comfort care should be part of our decision making long before it is needed. Sometimes, that does not happen and comfort care can be initiated at any time with the consent of the patient and a provider. For the best outcome, plan now for comfort care and then adjust those plans accordingly to everyone’s needs.
We all live and eventually we all pass on. How we die is something we should plan and discuss openly with everyone involved. Comfort care removes burdens such as spiritual angst, guilt, and helps us deal with the grieving process while we are still living. Our end of lifetime should be as freeing as possible and comfort care helps do just that.
Contact Us Now To Learn More
It is easy to learn about all the services we offer at Pleasantville Hospice, including hospice and palliative comfort care, as well as grief counseling and other support options available to our patients and their loved ones.
If you have more questions on “how patients benefit from comfort care” and if it is right for you or your loved one, our Pleasantville Hospice caregivers are available 24 hours, 7 days a week. Whether you need a break in between visits, need a listening ear, or a shoulder to cry on. Our comfort care professionals will be here to help you and your family during this time of great need.