Hospice and End of Life Care for Arizona Seniors
Finding Hospice in Arizona
Hospice care can be a care option for seniors who have a prognosis of six months of life or less related to their medical conditions. Hospice care falls under the category of palliative care, which is to say that the focus of hospice is to relieve pain and discomfort, trying to maximize the quality of life for a patient’s remaining time. Hospice provides medical care, such as pain management to their patients, ensures their comfort, health, and hygiene, and assists with their patients mood and mental health as well. Hospice care deals specifically with patients who are approaching the end of their life and Arizona hospice providers have the tools to make sure that their patients have all the resources and tools that they would want to make it through their last, often difficult, final months.
If you are interested to learn the qualifications for hospice care in Arizona, an agent at Senior Planning would be happy to go over some of the details with you to see if it is a good option for you or your loved one. Certain diagnosis criteria allow you to have hospice care covered by Medicare. If you are looking for a hospice provider, we can match you up with a provider in your area that can provide the care you need. Our agency has worked with many hospices around the valley and throughout the state.
Hospice Care Explained
Hospice care provides for both the physical and mental wellbeing of the patients under its charge. The care can be provided in a patient’s home or in a hospice facility. Hospice caregivers can also provide care at nursing homes, assisted living facilities, or group homes depending on a patient’s need and care level. Hospice workers include M.D.’s, Nurses, Social Workers, and counselors that look after the mental wellbeing of the patient. Senior Planning will work with you to get you the hospice care that you need from a local provider, as well as helping you with any new housing arrangement that you would like to make. Hospice for Arizona seniors is covered by Medicare Part A with only some exceptions for respite stays at facilities and certain outpatient services.
Death and Dying
If COVID19 has emphasized anything, it’s that Americans are very reluctant to talk about death, dying, and care at the end of a person’s life. Many people are sadly ill-prepared about what they want done in crisis situations and family members are too-often forced to make spur of the moment medical decisions. Although everyone experiences a loved one dying at some point, the process, along with grief and mourning, can feel extremely isolating. Beyond hospice, there are also many end-of-life documents that can be created to help families more-easily navigate their loved ones’ death.
End of Life Documents
Death and dying are a normal part of life, but most of us do not know where to start when it actually happens to us. First, it is important to create the correct end-of-life documents to ensure that your loved ones aren’t panicking during an already stressful time. One of the most important documents you can create to help your family through an already tough time is called a living will. A living will, also called an advanced healthcare directive, defines a person’s requests for end-of-life care in the event they cannot communicate when the times comes to make those decisions. As a legal document preparer, Senior Planning can assist with the creations of living wills.
Unlike a healthcare POA, which allows someone else to make important medical decisions, this document allows a person to make medical decisions themselves, in advance. A living will can describe if you’d like to use life support, resuscitation in the event of a heart attack or stroke, or even how you’d like hospice care to be administered. This document removes the burden from loved ones when making tough end-of-life decisions. A living will is practical for an adult of any age.
Hospice and End of Life Information
Hospice Myths Explained
People mistakenly believe that hospice hastens death to fit into their six month time limit. This is simply not true. Patients can be on hospice, begin recovering, and then be taken off of hospice. Many people will use hospice multiple times in the last few years of their life. The six months estimate is simply a way to ensure that the agency is able to get paid by Medicare, who will not pay for hospice care indefinitely.
Along with the living will mentioned above, there are many other end-of-life documents a person should consider. Senior Planning can help with the last will and testament, durable power of attorney, living trusts, irrevocable trusts, and much more. The more prepared you are the easier it will be for your loved ones. Even if you currently have no chronic conditions, you never know when a crisis might strike.
Can Senior Planning Help?
Senior Planning can help with document creation, benefit applications, and of course finding care. If you are not sure where to start when it comes to finding hospice or palliative care, give us a call and we can recommend some agencies to fit you or your loved one’s care needs. Also, if your loved one is declining, but not at the hospice level, it may be worth applying to ALTCS to help pay for the care.
You may be surprised to learn there are many community bereavement resources if you know where to look. These resources include hospice groups, grief camps, counseling groups, and of course, traditional one on one grief counseling. If your loved one spent their final weeks enrolled in a hospice program, it’s worth inquiring about bereavement resources. Oftentimes, these services are free for family members.