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What Are The Four Levels Of Hospice Care?

Hospice care is provided for those who are suffering from a terminal illness. Hospice care also offers support to the family members of the patient as they are dealing with the terminal illness of their loved one. These are the four levels of care that are provided by hospice.

In Home Care 

Hospice provides in home care to those patients who have symptoms that are controlled. This includes providing care for chronic pain, bleeding, nausea and vomiting and respiratory problems. Routine visits are made by nurses, home health aides, chaplains and social workers.

Medications are administered to help control the patient's symptoms and medical equipment is often delivered to the home to make the patient more comfortable. This may include hospital beds, oxygen tanks or any other equipment that makes it easier for the patient to remain at home during this time.

Inpatient Care 

If the patient's symptoms have gotten very severe and cannot be controlled at home, he may need to spend time as an inpatient in a hospice facility or acute care medical center. While the patient is in the facility, hospice care and the patient's physician work together to help return the patient's symptoms to a more controlled level. This may be a temporary stay until the patient improves enough to return to his own home.

Respite Care 

Hospice patients are often cared for at home by family members or friends who are with them around the clock. This can be very tiresome for the caregiver and there may be times that the caregiver needs to rest. The hospice patient can stay in a hospice care facility for a few days at a time to allow the caregiver time to rest. While the patient is at the facility, he is provided around the clock care by the hospice care workers.

Continuous Nursing Care  

If the patient has severe symptoms that are not controlled, he also has the option to remain at home instead of going to a hospice care facility. This means that he will receive the same around the clock care by a hospice nurse at home as he would with inpatient care. Often this type of care is provided during the last stages of life so the patient can be surrounded by family and loved ones during his final days.

While hospice care does not provide a way to cure an illness, it can be very helpful in easing the pain and suffering of a terminally ill patient. Hospice provides care that gives those who are nearing the end of their life the option of spending their last days in the comfort of their own homes. To learn more about hospice care, visit a website like http://www.carolinaeast.org.