The month of July represents powerful American values – Independence and Freedom. To many, independence also means choosing your own path and the freedom to make your own choices. This gift of freedom is important in many aspects of our lives – choosing our careers, where we live, who we marry, if we get married. But choice is also very important at the end of life. Roze Room Hospice believes that it is important that everyone understands their rights to choose hospice care and has the tools needed to choose the right hospice provider. You should be as informed as possible in order to know that you are making the best decision for you and your family. Here are 5 tips on how to choose a hospice provider.
CONSIDER COMPLIANCE & ACCREDITATION
Is the hospice Medicare certified?
Has the hospice been surveyed by a state or federal oversight agency in the last five years?
Is the hospice an NHPCO member?
Is the hospice accredited by a national organization?
Does the hospice conduct a family evaluation survey?
UNDERSTAND HOW OFTEN HOSPICE STAFF VISIT
Will staff come to the home if there is a crisis at any time of the day or night and on weekends?
Who is available to make hospice home visit (nurses, doctors, social workers, chaplains)?
Who is on the hospice team and how often do they visit?
UNDERSTAND THE HOSPICE ADMISSION PROCESS
How quickly can the intake/admissions staff come to begin the admissions process?
How quickly can hospice get durable medical equipment like hospital beds and oxygen to you or your loved one’s home?
WHAT SERVICES DOES HOSPICE PROVIDE?
What special services are available through hospice?
What services do volunteers offer?
Does hospice offer non-traditional services like music therapy?
Does hospice offer services like hydration, artificial nutrition, paracentesis, high flow oxygen, when needed?
ASK ABOUT THE HOSPICE LOCATION
Is the hospice a local privately-owned provider or a national chain?
How long has the hospice served the community?
MAKING THE HOSPICE CHOICE
Once you decide it may be time for the comfort, skill, support and resources hospice brings it is important to ensure you understand your rights. Many patients are unaware that they have the right to select a hospice provider of their choice.
IT IS YOUR DECISION: The decision which hospice provider to select is completely up to you. Your physician may have ties to a hospice, but it is ultimately your decision.
ASK BY NAME: It is important that you ask for your hospice provider of choice by name. Be very specific. If you are in the hospital, they may give you a list to choose from, but it always remains your choice.
YOU CAN ASK FOR HOSPICE CARE: You can ask for hospice care. You do not have to wait for your doctor to suggest hospice care. Your physician will need to sign an order for care, but you can request hospice care. You can reach out to Roze Room and we can contact your physician to help determine if hospice is the right choice.