What Is Hospice? - CBS46 News

What Is Hospice?

When you or someone you love is facing a life-limiting illness, it can seem like your world has been shattered.  You might feel powerless, overwhelmed, frightened and/or alone.  Where can you turn to find compassionate care not only for distressing physical symptoms, but also for emotional, spiritual and financial concerns?  This is where Hospice can help.  Hospice is a philosophy of care that focuses on the support and care of people in the latter stages of a disease when a cure is no longer a realistic goal.  When medicine and traditional measures cannot provide a cure, the goal of hospice is to provide comfort and support, focusing on minimizing the patient's physical and emotional pain while promoting a quality of life that preserves dignity, as well as providing guidance and support for the caretakers.

Harbor Grace Hospice is comprised of a team of experienced and caring professionals devoted to providing compassionate end of life care to our patients.  The goal of hospice care is always to alleviate suffering and to manage symptoms.  Hospice does nothing to speed up or slow down the dying process.  Our role is to lend support to the patient and their loved ones, while allowing the disease process to naturally unfold as comfortably as possible.  Hospice is about fully living your final days, weeks, months or years with dignity, meaning and peace.  We encourage patients to do what they enjoy for as long as they are able.

Our interdisciplinary team works together to create an individualized plan to address each patient's specific needs.  The Harbor Grace Hospice interdisciplinary team is led by our Medical Director, Dr. Torey B. Clark, who is Board Certified in Hospice and Palliative Medicine, and includes nurse practitioners, nurses, certified nursing assistants, chaplains, social workers, bereavement counselors and volunteers.  These team members work with the patient and their family to keep the patient as comfortable and pain-free as possible.  Team members come to the patient's home, or whatever setting the patient calls home, whether that's a private residence, assisted living facility or nursing home.  We also have our own 22-bed Inpatient Unit where our professional staff is available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, to meet special care needs that cannot be effectively managed in a private home setting.