Choosing the best hospice provider for the patient is very important, although not necessarily as difficult as you think. It just requires a little preparation to ensure that you can ask relevant questions that may affect the experiences of those involved.
Do hospices offer the same essential services?
All hospices that participate with Medicare provide the same basic services. However, there still may be some slight differences between providers that make one a better choice for you over another. There are several things to look for and compare before you choose hospice care.
Does the hospice meet state and local regulations for operating as a business? Many hospice programs seek accreditation by the Joint Commission or the Community Health Accreditation Program, agencies that measure a provider’s quality of care against best practices and standards. A lack of accreditation, however, does not necessarily mean the quality of care is substandard.
Narrow Down the Choices
There are many ways to determine which provider to consider. One of the best is orally, especially if a relative or trusted friend will share their hospice experience. Your physician not only may have a list of providers, but they may also offer to share their professional experience with the hospice provider for you to take into consideration. Once you know which provider to consider, you can set up informational appointments with one, some, or all.
You should expect any potential hospice provider to send a representative to meet with the patient and primary caregiver to discuss the services provided and answer questions. Ensure there will be no charge for this visit and no obligation to choose that provider. If at all possible, prepare questions before the meeting to concentrate on the answers.
Some of the questions that might be asked in the interview include:
- How quickly will the hospice respond if medications do not seem to be sufficiently addressing pain or symptoms?
- How quickly will a care plan be developed for the individual by the hospice?
- How quickly can we expect pain and symptoms to be managed?
- What does the hospice do when someone’s pain cannot be adequately managed at home?
- If there is a need for inpatient care, how will the hospice address that?
- Are there any services, medications, or equipment that the hospice doesn’t provide?
- What is expected of the family caregiver?
- Does the hospice measure quality of care, and does it have any quality data it can share?
- Will the hospice provide training to family caregivers?
- What help do your hospice volunteers provide, and how can we request assistance from a volunteer?
- Can the hospice provide respite care to give family caregivers a break, and how does the hospice arrange that?
- What kind of bereavement support is offered by the hospice?
- If we are unhappy with some aspect of the hospice’s care, who can we contact at the hospice?
A Compassionate and Caring Team
Ameriprime hospice care ensures you get skilled medical caregivers in nursing homes, care facilities, and even hospitals. The hospice team can help 24 hours a day, seven days a week. Are you in Dallas, Richardson, Carrolton, Garland, and surrounding TX communities? Don’t hesitate to contact us at (972) 787-0949 or on the contact form on our website to book your 24/7 hospice care.