Hospice Supportive Care at Home

Eldercare Support Services, LLC is a trusted home care provider located in Clinton Township, Michigan, providing patient care services for seniors in need of home care assistance. We provide companion care, personal care, hospice support services, respite care, post-surgery and rehab care, and more.  Let’s make aging in place a whole lot easier and more convenient by assisting your family with in-home care services.

We make aging in place easier by providing our clients with exceptional home care services. For 40+ years we have served Clinton Township, Sterling Heights and the local communities. We are family owned and operated. Our name and our services are a trusted resource for families and healthcare professionals.

If you or a loved one have recently received a terminal diagnosis, you may be wondering about hospice care. What is hospice care? Can you get hospice care at home? What are the differences between hospice care and palliative care? Who pays for hospice care? How do you know if your loved one needs hospice care at home?

What Does it Mean When Someone Is in Hospice Care?

Hospice care, also known as comfort care, provides compassionate care for people in the last phase of an incurable disease. It’s a special kind of care that focuses on the quality of life for people so they can live as fully and comfortably as possible [1]. Usually, a person is placed in hospice care when they are expected to live for 6 months or less.

Does Hospice Care Mean End of Life?

Yes. Hospice care is for people who are no longer pursuing treatments that may extend their life. People on hospice care are typically expected to live no longer than 6 months.

What Is Hospice Care at Home?

Hospice care at home is hospice care provided at the home of a patient or that of one of their loved ones rather than in a facility such as a hospital or nursing home.

What Are the 4 Levels of Hospice Care?

Medicare defines 4 levels of hospice care. Depending on a hospice care patient’s needs and wishes, they may experience all 4 levels or only 1. The 4 levels of hospice care are [2]:

  • Level 1: Routine Home Care is a range of services available for times when you or your loved one are not in crisis.
  • Level 2: Continuous Home Care is for when you need a higher level of nursing care during times of crisis. It means you need a nurse for at least 8 hours in a 24-hour period.
  • Level 3: General Inpatient Care is for when short-term symptoms are too severe to manage at home.
  • Level 4: Respite Care is a short stay in a hospital or other facility to give your primary caregiver a a needed break.

Providing exceptional Hospice Supportive Care at Home for seniors and families in Sterling Heights, Utica, Shelby Township, Macomb Township, Fraser, St. Clair Shores, Harrison Township, Grosse Pointe, and Clinton Township.​

Hospice Supportive Home Care in Clinton Township, MI by Eldercare Support Services, LLC

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Looking for in-home care in the Clinton Township, MI area? Learn more about our non-medical home care services here.

Hospice Care at Home; What You Need to Know

For patients receiving in-home hospice care, the primary caregiver not only provides most of the physical care for the patient, but also helps with keeping records of symptoms and other problems. 

The primary caregiver can share the physical care responsibilities with other family members or hired caregivers through Eldercare Support Services, LLC, but takes responsibility for communication with the hospice team, and for scheduling caregivers in the home as needed.

Hospice care staff members are kind and caring. They communicate well, are good listeners, and want to support families during the last stage of an advanced illness. They’re usually specially trained in the unique issues surrounding death and dying and are given ongoing education and support to help with the emotional demands of the job.

It’s important to know that home hospice may require that someone be home with the patient 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. This may be a problem for people who live alone or whose partner or adult children have full-time jobs. But in most cases, creative scheduling and the assistance of a non-medical home care agency like Eldercare Support Services, LLC can help. 

Members of the hospice staff will visit regularly to check on the patient, family, and caregivers. They will make sure that any symptoms are under control and give any needed care and services.

Hospice Supportive Home Care in Clinton Township, MI by Eldercare Support Services, LLC

Who Pays for Hospice Care at Home?

Medicare and Veterans’ Administration (VA) benefits typically cover hospice care [4]. Some private insurance plans also offer at least some hospice care coverage. Additionally, some hospice organizations may offer hospice care for free or at a reduced rate depending on your ability to pay thanks to donations, grants, and other sources.

Does Medicare Pay for Hospice at Home?

Yes, Medicare does pay for hospice at home. Your regular doctor and hospice doctor must certify that you are terminally ill and have a life expectancy of 6 months or less [5]. Once you are on hospice care, Medicare will no longer cover any treatments intended to cure your terminal illness or related conditions.

Medicare does not pay for “extra” care that might be needed, such as 24-hour caregivers or 24-hour home health aides. Talk to us for more information.

Palliative Care vs Hospice Care, What’s the Difference?

Palliative care is specialized medical care for people living with any serious illness, such as heart failure or cancer [3]. Patients in palliative care may still pursue treatment intended to cure their illness alongside medical care for their symptoms that is intended to enhance a person’s quality of life while battling the illness.

Hospice care is for people who have a serious illness and are approaching the end of their life. They don’t want to pursue further treatments to attempt to cure or slow the progress of the disease, or no such treatments exist. Hospice care provides comprehensive care for the patient and support for their family, but all attempts to cure the illness are stopped.

According to the American Cancer Society [1]:

"Hospice care and palliative care both aim to provide better quality of life and relief from symptoms and side effects for people with a serious illness. Both have special care teams that address a person's physical, emotional, mental, social, and spiritual needs. But although hospice care often includes palliative care, they are not the same thing.”

Who Pays for Hospice Care at Home?

It can be difficult to know if your loved one is ready for hospice care at home. Here are a few signs to look for:

  • Treatment is no longer working or your loved one no longer wants to pursue aggressive intervention.
  • They are less able to communicate.
  • They are visiting the hospital or doctor more often.
  • Their symptoms are getting harder to manage.
  • They frequently seem restless or confused.
  • They have recurrent infections.
  • They spend much of their time sleeping.
  • They’re losing weight for no apparent reason or don’t have much appetite.
  • You are feeling overwhelmed and stressed as a caregiver.

"Hospice care is for people who are no longer pursuing treatments that may extend their life."

How Long Does a Person Live After Being Put on Hospice?

A person is usually put on hospice care when they are expected to live for less than 6 months. Some people may live longer than 6 months, while others may only be on hospice for hours or days before succumbing to their illness.

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References and Additional Reading

  1. American Cancer Society, What Is Hospice Care? https://www.cancer.org/treatment/end-of-life-care/hospice-care/what-is-hospice-care.html
  2. Angela Morrow, RN, Verywell Health, Levels of Hospice Care as Defined by Medicare, https://www.verywellhealth.com/levels-of-hospice-care-1132297
  3. National Institute on Aging, What Are Palliative Care and Hospice Care? https://www.nia.nih.gov/health/what-are-palliative-care-and-hospice-care
  4. American Cancer Society, How and Where Is Hospice Care Provided and How Is it Paid For? https://www.cancer.org/treatment/end-of-life-care/hospice-care/who-provides-hospice-care.html
  5. Medicare, Hospice Care, https://www.medicare.gov/coverage/hospice-care
  • American Hospice Foundation, Choose a Hospice: 16 Questions to Ask, https://americanhospice.org/learning-about-hospice/choosing-a-hospice-16-questions-to-ask/
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