Getting Started with Hospice

It is perfectly fine that you don't know all you want to know about hospice services. Until this point of visiting our website, you likely had no reason to think much about what we offer.

In most instances, a patient who is considering hospice will do so because their doctor has recommended that hospice is the next step in the care plan for that person. What then would happen is that your physician will contact us and we will visit with the patient and their caregiver/spouse/healthcare proxy to explain what services we can offer you.

Once the patient is signed in with Good Shepherd Hospice, a team made up of a doctor, nurse, CNA, social worker and chaplain will be in service to that patient and their family. You will quickly learn that our program is designed to not only care for the patient but also to help the family understand everything that is going on and how they can best be of help to their loved one. Now, don't worry. They don't all come at once!

Good Shepherd Hospice provides care to anyone facing a serious life-limiting illness, but that does not mean a person must be close to death to be admitted into our service. A hospice-appropriate patient is defined as someone with a life expectancy of six months or less. However, it is not unusual for some of our patients to live longer than six months.

Most patients come to us through a referral from a doctor or a nursing home. But if you think your loved one can benefit from our service, feel free to call and talk to one of our experts, and we'll walk with you through the process. Simply call us at 828-516-1104 and speak with a Good Shepherd Hospice team member today. Do not worry. Calling is not a commitment, but rather conversation about your options.  

When is hospice appropriate?

“If only we had known how good this would be, we would have called sooner.” It truly is the one statement we hear over and over again. What happens way too often is that people think hospice is only for final hours or days, which it should not be. The hospice benefit can be for months, and the quality of life provided for the patient is why we hear the statement we shared. Too many people wait too late to benefit from all the help we can offer you and your loved ones.

Many people think that choosing hospice is giving up on life when, in fact, it is taking a step to make sure that pain and symptoms are controlled and life is lived as you want it to be. Talk to your doctor about symptoms and a prognosis and don’t be afraid to talk about hospice as a part of your care plan.

Call the Good Shepherd main telephone number, (828) 516-1104, today and learn more about the family-focused care provided by our agency. You should not do this alone.

Here are some symptoms that your loved one may be facing that may lead to a discussion about hospice care: 

  • Your loved one grows weaker each day.

  • Your loved one is losing physical abilities.

  • Your loved one visits the hospital more frequently and those hospital stays last longer.

  • Your loved one is losing weight quickly.

  • What used to be simple is difficult—like eating, bathing and walking.