The goal of hospice care is to limit suffering and maintain as high a level of cognitive function as possible. Unlike palliative care, hospice is generally entered when a person is expected to live roughly 6 months or less and after the treatment goal turns from curative to comfort.
Similar to palliative care, hospice can be provided in a variety of environments, including at home, in a nursing home, assisted living facility, or hospital.
Hospice care providers work to not only support the needs of the patient, but of everyone involved such as the primary caregiver and family, and remains as a service to the family after a patient dies.
Questions to ask about quality of life
- Is there a counselor or someone that I can talk with to help me cope with my prognosis?
- Ask about home hospice care
- Ask about palliative care
- At what point should we shift focus from trying to treat the tumor, to treating me?
Questions to ask about planning
- Ask about a DNR or living will
- What’s important to make sure I have in my Will?
- Ask about donating your tumor tissue to research
- Do you have a copy of the healthcare proxy or living will form?