Hospice Myths: You Must Have a Doctor Referral for Hospice Care
Do you have a loved one who is ailing in health and has declined further treatment options? An aging senior may come to the point that the pain and discomfort that comes with treatments for cancer or other diseases are no longer worth it. If you feel like it is time to discuss hospice care, you can bring it up to your doctor, but you do not need a referral from them in order to start receiving hospice care.
Speaking with Your Doctor About Hospice
You and your loved one have control over care options to keep your aging loved one feeling comfortable and able to do the things they love. If you have a doctor who has not breached the topic of hospice care, speak up. Most families feel like they should’ve signed up for hospice care earlier in the process, once they know how beneficial it is to their loved one’s quality of life.
It is the doctor’s responsibility to discuss treatment plans with the patient and their families. Once the patient declines further treatment, hospice care is often the next choice a family has to make. While you do not need a doctor’s referral to find a provider for hospice, the doctor will need to communicate the status of your loved one’s health. Your chosen hospice provider will contact your doctor to find out their health history and if they are ready for the benefits provided by hospice care.
Here are some ways that you can start a conversation about hospice with your doctor:
- What are the next steps to maximize the patient’s quality of life?
- When is the earliest that we can look into hospice care?
- How do we provide a comfortable, central place in our home for the patient?
- Which providers do you recommend for hospice care?
While the family doctor is a usual first step in finding resources about hospice care, you do not have to wait for them to begin researching or hiring a hospice care provider of your choosing. If you’re ready to learn more about starting hospice care services, please call us. The highly trained hospice experts at Bonita Springs Healthcare Services will help you navigate your choices and answer any questions you may have.
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