Hospice Care Is a Community Effort

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Coping with the death of a family member

Allow Yourself to Grieve

One of the most important things you can do when faced with the death of a loved one is to allow yourself to grieve. You may experience shock, anger, sadness, and can even feel lost or helpless. This is normal, but it is necessary to express these feelings because keeping them in will only lessen your ability to cope.

Talk to your family and friends about what you are feeling. It is likely that they are feeling the same emotions as you and talking about it will help you cope and find closure. Talking about your loved one after their death is also a great way to honor their memory and help you appreciate the moments you had with them. There are other ways to honor them as well, including donating to their favorite charities, planting a tree in their memory, or spending time with family to share stories and reminisce with photos of fun times. These kinds of activities, while they may seem difficult, will help you find closure and acceptance.

When you experience the death of a family member, you will be filled with many emotions and may also be required to do things like make funeral arrangements or work with their estate planners to carry out their final will. During this time, it is imperative that you take care of yourself and not neglect your needs – eat well, get plenty of rest, and try to continue doing the things that bring you joy. Whether this is exercise or spending time with friends, this will help you cope and keep a level head while dealing with other responsibilities.

MEDIA INQUIRIES

From aides to counselors, there are many unsung heroes who are essential to hospice care

Hospice care is a challenging field to work in. Dealing with illness and death on a daily basis can be a heavy burden to bear, which is why it takes an entire team of dedicated individuals to provide quality care. 

Every one of these individuals, from doctors and nurses to counselors and chaplains, plays an important role in creating a compassionate and supportive environment and delivering end-of-life care.

Here is a list of just some of the key workers who form the community of care at a hospice facility.

Hospice Doctors

These doctors help patients and their families by communicating information, creating a hospice care plan, making referrals, and navigating the big decisions around end-of-life care. They also consult with a patient’s other medical providers, such as their family doctor, to establish whether or not hospice care is their best option.

Hospice Nurses

A hospice setting requires different types of nurses that each have a specialized set of skills. They perform a variety of functions in the provision of care, from the moment a patient enters the facility to the eventual end of life. 

An admissions nurse, for example, will orient new hospice patients and their families to the facility and explain the admissions process. A case manager will oversee a patient’s case, ensuring that the care plan is carried out appropriately and smoothly. Triage nurses respond to calls for help and make on-the-spot decisions that can save lives.

Hospice Counselors and Chaplains

In addition to physical care, hospice patients also require spiritual care. Counselors and chaplains provide this necessary support. They help patients approach the end of life, which can be a difficult, confusing, and frightening experience. They provide the spiritual guidance that can help a patient make sense of their life, reckon with their regrets, and generally make peace with all that has happened in their life. In certain religious traditions, these kinds of workers perform the rituals that are prescribed for transitioning into the afterlife.

Hospice Aides

Hospice aides perform a range of duties related to patient care, including bathing and grooming, getting dressed, and light housework. They visit a patient on a regular basis—this can be daily or every few days. They provide the all-around care that a caregiver typically would, but with a specialized skill set that is specifically focused on hospice care.

A Community of Care

Working in a hospice setting is different from most other workplaces, with a unique set of challenges and rewards. The people who dedicate their time and effort to providing end-of-life care truly provide a special and essential support to patients and their families.

Official Member of the California Hospice and Palliative Care Association & the Ventura County Homecare Association, INC

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Westlake Village Hospice, Inc provides home hospice care for patients in Los Angeles, Arleta, Calabasas, Canoga Park, Burbank, Chatsworth, Encino, Glendale, Glenoaks, Granada HIlls, Hansen Hills, Hidden Hills, La Crescenta, Lake Balboa, Lake View Terrace, MIssion Hills, North Hills, North Hollywood, Northridge, Pacoima, Panorama City, Porter Ranch, Reseda, San Fernando, Shadow Hills, Sherman Oaks, Sun Valley, Sunland, Studio City, Sylmar, Tarzana, Toluca Lake, Toluca Terrace, Tujunga, Valley Glen, Valley Village, Van Nuys, Vergudo, West Hills, West Toluca Lake, Winnetka, Woodland Hills, Ventura County, Antelope Valley, and the San Fernando Valley.
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