The Hospice Team is comprised of a medical director (who partners with the person's own physician), nurse practitioner, registered nurse, respiratory therapist, home health aide, social worker, chaplain and volunteer. Hospice provides all medications related to the terminal illness as well as any medical equipment needed in the home. Hospice offers personal care assistance, counseling and therapies. Hospice Care of America provides bereavement follow up with families for 13 months after the death of their loved one along with grief counseling and support throughout the dying process.
In-Home Nursing Care
Hospice Care of America will provide in-home nursing care for those patients living at their own home, with a relative, or in a nursing center. Hospice Care of America patients benefit from continued care by a primary nurse. Patients also have the option of using the 24-hour on call triage nurse. The Hospice Care of America nursing staff is professional, caring and well equipped to evaluate a person's comfort and make recommendations for symptom management.
Personal Care Assistance
Hospice Care of America hires only professional, caring Home Health Aides. Each Home Health Aide is a Certified Nursing Assistant and specializes in end of life home health care. Hospice Care of America is proud to boast that they have some of the best Home Health Aides in the entire Northern Illinois region.
In-Home Medical Equipment
All equipment and supplies that are needed to keep a patient safe and comfortable at home or in their health care facility will be provided by Hospice Care of America.
Medications for Quality of Life
Hospice Care of America provides all prescription and over-the-counter medications for the patient that are directly related to the terminal diagnosis. Hospice Care of America does not charge their patients or family members for services. Hospice is a benefit of Medicare, Medicaid and Private Insurance.
Being the caregiver for a terminally ill person is not an easy job. Caregivers often have feelings of exhaustion, loneliness, frustration, anger and more. These feelings can be intensified if the person being cared for does not recognize the caregiver or may be too ill to speak or perform simple task such as feeding. Adding to the already frustrating situation, some caregivers have to endure behavioral problems, such as yelling, hitting or wandering away from home, from the person they are caring for. Stress often accompanies the day to day demands of care giving. Caregivers can experience the following:
• Feeling sad or moody
• Crying more often than normal
• Low energy level
• Feeling like they don't have anytime for themselves
• Having trouble sleeping or not wanting to get out of bed
• Having trouble eating or eating too much
• Seeing friends or relatives less often than normal
• Losing interest in hobbies or the things they used to do with family or friends
• Feeling angry at the person they are caring for or at other people or situations
These feelings are not wrong or strange. Caregiving can be very stressful and thankless. With these conditions in mind, it is important for every caregiver to remember that they must find ways to take care of themselves and stay healthy. If the caregiver becomes sick, who will care for their loved one? If you or someone you know is a caregiver and experiencing some of the above mentioned symptoms, please follow this advice:
• Talk with family doctor about feelings
• Stay in touch with friends and family members. Ask them for help in giving care
• Look for help in community. Start by asking home church or synagogue about services or volunteers who can help.
More support for caregivers can be found at the following links:
The highly trained professionals of Hospice Care of America work diligently to heal skin wounds. Each clinical member of the team is specially trained in the care of wounds that can develop when a person is facing a life limiting illness. Hospice Care of America staff members believe that everyone deserves the opportunity to live out their last days as pain free and comfortable as possible. Therefore, each clinical team member works hard to treat and heal skin wounds.
Hospice Care of America provides specially trained social workers as well as chaplains to be available for each patient and/or their family members. These counseling services are included in each patient's hospice privilege and can be helpful in preparing for the end of life. Counseling services can also be used to help mend broken relationships and bring resolution to different circumstances that a patient may be dealing with before they pass away.
Volunteers play a very important role in the day to day activities and services of Hospice Care of America. Our hospice is looking for compassionate, mature, and dedicated people to join our team of volunteers. If you think you might be that person, and would like to learn more about our program and volunteer opportunities, please contact the Volunteer Coordinator at (815) 316-2700.
Hospice Care of America provides a variety of therapeutic care for those patients who qualify. To get a listing of services provided, please call (toll free) 1-888-206-9972.
Hospice bereavement services, provided by qualified staff and volunteers, begin with the initial assessment and will continue through 13 months of the bereavement period. The goal is to help the patient/family cope with death related to grief and loss issues. Following the death of the patient, families will be offered support, which follows an individualized bereavement care plan. Bereavement services address such issues as:
• Family grief and loss issues
• Survivor(s) needs
• Social, religious, and cultural issues
• Potential for complicated grief reactions
Helpful links for those dealing with grief:
Hospice Care of America offers several different class topics that are provided free-of-charge to any group interested in having a staff member teach. These classes can be tailored in time and specifics to the needs of the hosting group.
Grief Related to the Dying Process
Practical, insightful advice for staff providing emotional support to residents and families dealing with death as well as coping strategies for caregivers who anticipate and suffer the loss of beloved residents.
End-of-Life Spiritual Needs
Thoughtful examination of the spiritual needs of individuals who are dying in light of our own views about mortality. Discussion of ways to comfort residents that are not awkward or threatening for them or for us.
Physical/Mental Changes at the End of Life
A frank discussion about the symptoms and signs that precede death. Ways to decrease pain and promote mental, physical and emotional comfort and dignity throughout the dying process.
When Is It Time for Hospice?
Information about how and when an individual qualifies for hospice benefits. Answers to the most frequently asked questions about hospice as well as questions form the audience.
The Last Hours of Living: Practical Advice to Caregivers
This in-service provides a comprehensive overview of the last hours of life, focusing on the assessment and management of common physical symptoms and syndromes near the time of death. This activity is intended for physicians, physician assistants, nurse practitioners, nurses, students and others who care for patients during their last hours of life. Upon completion of this activity, participants will be able to: assist families to prepare for the last hours of life, assess and manage the physiological changes of dying, and pronounce a death and notify the family.
Patient services are provided without regard to race, color, creed, age, gender, sexual orientation, handicap (mental or physical), or place of national origin.
Hospice Care of America is an Equal Employment Opportunity Employer. Our objective is to employ individuals qualified and/or trainable for positions by virtue of education, training, experience and personal qualifications without regard to race, color, age and ancestry, religion, sex, national origin, disability, veteran status or sexual orientation. All applicants 18 years of age and above will be considered for employment. Qualified physically or mentally disabled individuals will also be given reasonable accommodations if requested.
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