If you or a loved one has been diagnosed with a terminal illness, then the suggestion of hospice care may likely come up. For those living in the Chicago area, you will likely want to find the best hospice Chicago has to offer, one that offers comfort, understanding, and plenty of help. There are actually a number of factors to keep in mind or consider as you choose a hospice care. It’s always a good idea to be aware of these as you go through the decision making process.

Here’s a look at the top things you should know and ask about hospice care.

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What Exactly is Hospice Care?

Whether you’ve heard of hospice care before or not, it’s important to understand exactly what it means. Hospice care is meant for those with a terminal illness who have little time left to live, usually six months or less. The patient will move into the hospice care location and here they will provide medical support to keep them comfortable during their stay. As well, they usually offer spiritual and emotional support not just for the patient, but for the family members as well.

You don’t enter hospice care for a cure. Instead it is about keeping the patient as pain-free and comfortable as possible through a customized treatment plan. The medical support team is available to the patient 24/7 and is well trained in helping patients through this time.

How Do I Know Hospice Care is the Right Solution?

Hospice care is meant for those in the final stages of a terminal illness. It could be those final few months, weeks, or even days. It could be that you decide on your own to enter hospice care, or your doctors and medical team may suggest it. Hospice care is all about continuing quality of life, which may not be possible in your own home. At the same time, you may not wish to stay in a hospital for the final stages, so hospice care is an excellent alternative.

How Do I Choose a Hospice Care?

If you have decided hospice care is right for you or a loved one, you will want to ask a few questions before you choose a location. A good place to start is by asking for recommendations from your doctor, your hospital, or even your local nursing home. They will likely know all the available hospice cares in the area, and which ones have the best reputation.

It’s wise to then contact the hospice care and ask questions such as how long they have been operational, what kind of treatment do they offer, are the doctors and nurses available 24/7, is it Medicare-certified and accredited, how are the family concerns and roles accommodated at the location, and does it offer any additional kinds of services.

Making the Right Decision

Deciding whether or not you or your loved one should enter hospice care is a decision you don’t want to take lightly. It’s wise to get all the information you possibly can so you can make a decision you feel confident in.