Hospice care focuses on living | SierraSun.com

Hospice care focuses on living

Special to the Sun

TAHOE/TRUCKEE, Calif. and#8212; Tahoe Forest Health System (TFHS) shares with the community the important message during National Hospice Awareness Month: Hospice care helps patients and their families to focus on living.

and#8220;Even when facing a serious and life-limiting illness, lifeand#8217;s final months may be some of the most fulfilling especially when patients and families turn to hospice care for assistance,and#8221; said Stephanie Hanson, director of hospice and home health for TFHS. and#8220;Although November is designated as National Hospice Awareness Month, our message extends throughout the year.and#8221;

Every year more than 1.45 million patients receive care from the nationand#8217;s hospices. Hospice care involves a team-oriented approach. Its mission is to enhance the quality of life and to help preserve personal dignity while providing effective pain and symptom management, end of life education and a variety of social support services.

Many mistakenly think hospice care is just about dying; a place one calls when there is nothing more that can be done. When the focus of care transitions from cure to comfort, there are important facts to know about hospice services:

Hospice is not a place. Hospice services provides high-quality medical care that helps the patient, caregivers and family members focus on the quality of life at the end of life.

Hospice offers expertise in comfort care assuring the patient state of the art pain control and symptom management.

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The healthcare team works cooperatively with the patient, family and primary physician to customize a plan of care to meet individual needs.

Hospice care addresses the physical, emotional and spiritual needs of the patient. This support extends to family and friends.

Hospice staff is available for support 24 hours a day, seven days a week.

Hospice volunteers are available to assist patients and family members with a variety of needs during this time.

Hospice offers on-going grief support services to family members as well as community members who have endured the loss of a loved one.

Tahoe Forest Hospice is a licensed and Medicare certified program serving patients in the Truckee/Tahoe area, Incline Village, Nev. Plumas and Sierra Counties including Calpine, Graeagle, Portola, Floriston, Verdi, Sierraville, Loyalton, Soda Springs and Emigrant Gap.

Call 530-414-4862 or 775-833-0902 for information. To learn about Tahoe Forest Hospice volunteer opportunities, call 530-582-3534.

and#8212; Submitted to aedgett@sierrasun.com