Setting Goals for Hospice—for Living Fully

Setting Goals for Hospice — For Living Fully
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By DEN GRANGAARD, Director of Communication, Hospice of North Idaho

Comprehensive, high-quality hospice care enables patients and families to focus on living as fully as possible.

Hospice of north Idaho is our community’s only community-owned hospice. Its care is unique. Wherever an individual calls home, patients receive customized care at the level of skill they require, regardless of their financial circumstances.

Last year 56 percent of individuals who died in Kootenai County chose Hospice of North Idaho. Nationally, only 48 percent of individuals call upon hospices as their end-of-life care source.

Hospice offers a comprehensive care model to respond to the complexities of serious illness. They also respond to the impact that illness has on individuals and their families. Hospice of North Idaho offers 37-years of expertise, including pre-hospice palliative care, traditional hospice care, and grief support.

Diagnosis of a life-limiting disease causes drastic life changes. Pre-hospice palliative care responds to this unique and challenging time. With careful planning, thoughtful treatment plans, and emotional support, the team advocates for the patient’s choice for care.

Later, when a person determines they no longer want to receive curative treatments, traditional hospice care adds additional support in the remaining months of life. Hospice’s specialized clinical team offers choices for comfort and helps the patient adjust to new goals.

Families who call upon hospice services earlier in the disease process tell us how beneficial our services were. They let us how grateful they were to have time to make special moments and say a proper good-bye. Unfortunately, many families nationwide choose to call hospice in the last hours or days of care. The National Hospice and Palliative Care Organization reported that in 2016, 27.9 percent of Medicare patients who enrolled in hospice care received only one to seven days of care.

“It is essential that people understand that hospice and palliative care is not giving up, it is not the abandonment of care, it is not reserved for the imminently dying,” said Edo Banach, president and CEO of the National Hospice and Palliative Care Organization. “Hospice is a successful model of person-centered care that brings hope, dignity, and compassion when they are most needed. This is one reason that the national My Hospice Campaign was launched this year.”

My Hospice is a campaign to reinforce the value of the Medicare hospice benefit among policy and healthcare decision makers, to foster a policy environment that supports patient access to high-quality, comprehensive hospice and palliative care

Hospice is more than an emergent service. It is termed after “hospitality,” and it’s that warmth, brought to each patient and family, that creates peaceful days and lasting memories. ISI

Hospice of North Idaho offers pre-hospice palliative care, traditional hospice care, and grief support. Read   testimonies, attend a community event, or ask about enrollment calling (208) 773-7994 or visit