Hospice and Palliative Care​

More than one and a half million people receive some kind of hospice care each year according to the most recent statistics. According to the Center to Advance Palliative Care, there are six million people in the United States that could benefit from the type of care they give.

If you are caring for a loved one who is ill, you may be wondering what exactly the difference is between palliative care and hospice care. To help you understand this, we will briefly go over the key differences between them to try and help you decide which may be appropriate for yourself or a loved one.

Questions & Answers about Hospice & Palliative Care

In short, palliative care is a comprehensive method of caring for a patient as well as his or her family. With this type of care a team will work together in order to provide any support that may be necessary for the patient and their family.

 

The palliative care team may help with several things, including helping with hygiene, meal prep, or doing daily tasks to try to help relieve any burden you or your family member may feel while fighting illness. This help may also include any kind of social, religious, or medical care as well as emotional support. You can receive this type of care at almost any type of facility that cares for individuals who are ill, including: nursing homes, skilled nursing facilities, hospitals, as an outpatient, and even in your home. You and your team will work together in order to determine which is the best solution for you and your family.

 

The ultimate goal of palliative care is to help to ease any burden your illness can place on you or your family. With this system in place, it will make sure that neither you nor any members of your family will be overburdened as they help to care for you. While you are in palliative care, you will still receive treatment for your illness and work towards making a full recovery. Palliative care is there for any point where your illness becomes too all-consuming, but it doesn’t necessarily mean that your illness will lead to death.

Hospice services are very similar to palliative care in the fact that a team will help you or your loved one to handle staying as comfortable as possible. This means that you will receive medical and social care as well as emotional and religious support. Your family may also be provided materials to help educate them on your illness as well as all things related to it.

 

The essential difference between palliative and hospice care is that patients under hospice care have ceased all levels of treatment. These patients are not hoping to cure whatever illness they have and are preparing to die from it.

 

Hospice and your team aim to help you or your loved one to stay as comfortable as possible while living out the final days left. In many cases, this may also be called end of life care.

 

Your hospice team may also help with normal tasks such as bathing, personal hygiene, meal prep, and any other daily tasks that may be required. Any individual requiring hospice may receive this type of care at a dedicated hospice facility, skilled nursing facility, or even in their own home. Should you go on hospice care, you will often have a team dedicated to caring for you alongside other patients, but you will be able to reach out to them at nearly any time of the day or night.

Because palliative and hospice care are often mentioned at the same time, there is some level of confusion between them. Both types of care may be managed by the same skilled nursing facility or even by the same medical team. Certain facilities may also provide inpatient care for patients of both palliative and hospice care.

 

The main difference between these two types of care is that a patient receiving palliative care is still receiving medical treatments working to fight their illness. A patient who is receiving hospice care, instead, has decided to stop receiving medical treatment and is instead living out their last days. However, just because a patient is on hospice care does not mean that they will pass away immediately. Patients on hospice care may stay there for weeks to months or to a handful of years before passing away.

 

Due to their similarities, palliative care and hospice care are often mentioned together but also because those receiving palliative care may eventually transition from it to hospice care. This will occur when a patient in palliative care has decided to stop any treatments they are receiving, deciding that they would rather stay comfortable over trying to fight their illness.

Palliative or hospice care depends entirely on your insurance. The majority of people who receive this type of care are over the age of sixty-five and are therefore on Medicare. While Medicare does generally cover a large part of any kind of hospice or palliative care, you will still need to check with your provider in order to ensure that you will be covered.

 

There are some cases where Medicare will cover any hospice care but will not pay for palliative care. Or, if they do, they will only pay for a small amount of the costs.

 

In the event that you or a loved one is a veteran, it is most likely that you will be covered for any palliative or hospice care. Once again, you will still need to check your individual plan, since there may be things different between palliative care and hospice care and what will be covered for you or your loved one. There are many Arbors centers that have veteran assistance programs that will accept service and non-service connected veterans. When it is the VA that is fully paying for any skilled nursing services, the veteran will be able to keep all of their assets and income.

Though we have covered the difference between both palliative and hospice care, we have not covered where exactly you will receive that care. In certain cases, the insurance you have will only cover your care if you receive it in certain places. Once again, you will need to check with your provider for these particular details.

 

There are Arbors centers throughout the county that offer care for any who are too ill to continue with daily activities or tasks on their own. If you are considering palliative or hospice care for yourself or someone else over the age of sixty-five, contact us today to discuss your options. We specialize in navigating our residents and any of their caregivers through the confusing details of the healthcare system.

Woundcare

As we begin to get older, there are several conditions that can lead to different wounds. Due to there being a danger of wounds turning into more serious infections like sepsis or cellulitis, it is right to be concerned about your loved one’s wound care. At The Meadows, we know exactly how important it is to have proper wound care and we will treat every resident for their unique needs.

Once a wound has been received, the first weeks are the most important period in making sure that you are going through the process of proper wound care management. Should the wound be deeper or if you find that it is not healing properly, 24-hour care may be needed in order to evaluate its state to properly treat it. This is also a good option should there be any underlying health conditions that might affect the healing process.

Questions & Answers about Woundcare

  • Factors that may
    affect the healing process
  • What exactly
    is wound care?

Should you have a wound that is not healing properly, underlying issues may be involved. This can be caused by several factors including any health issues, medication you are taking, or even some lifestyle factors and can affect your recovery. While deciding on a course of treatment for you, our medical staff will check for all these factors before making a final decision.

In the event that you are dealing with any kind of chronic health issue, this can cause a decrease in your body’s ability to heal. Therefore, in order to ensure proper healing of your wound, the facility will need to get control over these issues.

 

These are the common issues that may affect wound healing:

  • Diabetes
  • Cancer
  • Pulmonary Diseases
  • A Heart Condition
  • Thyroid Issues
  • GI Diseases

 

In order for us to provide the best treatment for you, it is important to share if any of these issues affect you.

Any medication you are taking or any treatments you are undergoing may also have an effect on wound healing. Chemotherapy and radiation treatments, in particular, cause a breakdown in the body’s natural defense mechanisms and this can, in turn, slow down or stop wound healing.

If you are taking steroids or any anti-inflammatory type drugs, these can also have an effect on any wound treatment. We will take any drugs such as these into account while we are deciding on a course of care.

For the most part, people do not realize just how much their lifestyle choices and habits can influence their wound treatment. These factors, however, are important to consider and these are some to keep in mind:

  • Malnutrition
  • Obesity
  • Drug Use
  • Alcoholism
  • Smoking

The team taking care of you needs to know about any of the factors that may affect your treatment options.

Wound care is the series of stages involved in management of wounds. This will include diagnosis of the type of wound, consideration of any factors that may affect the healing process, and the proper treatment and management for a wound.

The first step to begin any treatment is to take an in-depth analysis of the wound. The team involved in your care will look at the size, depth, amount and type of any drainage, and the general appearance of the area around any wound.

In order for a wound to heal properly, your blood needs to send the proper amount of oxygen to the affected area. The nutrition that you are receiving plays a large role in the proper amount of oxygenation.

When working out how to ensure the adequate nutrition needed, our wound treatment specialists will make an analysis of your current needs. After that, our diet experts will construct a meal plan that will deal with any deficiencies that may need to be dealt with.

Vitamins A and E as well as Zinc are ones that our nutritionists will pay close attention to. They will also focus on protein intake, as it is considered helpful for wound healing.

An important aspect of wound care is keeping a watch for any infections. Facility personnel will closely monitor any wound to ensure that no infections set in. Should an infection have already set in, they will instead monitor it and provide treatment for any issues.

When working out how to ensure the adequate nutrition needed, our wound treatment specialists will make an analysis of your current needs. After that, our diet experts will construct a meal plan that will deal with any deficiencies that may need to be dealt with.

Vitamins A and E as well as Zinc are ones that our nutritionists will pay close attention to. They will also focus on protein intake, as it is considered helpful for wound healing.

Signs of infection in a wound include:

  • Increased drainage of the wound or any drainage that smells bad
  • Continued bleeding
  • Frail tissue around the wound
  • Increased pain or cellulitis
  • Fever and chills

Should an infection be left untreated, it can run the risk of becoming fatal. Therefore, it is essential to monitor any wound or infection closely.

Proper care being given to the wound and bandaging of it is important to ensure that an infection does not set in. In particular, bandaging should be changed regularly, and regular cleaning should be given to the wound.

Cleaning of the wound will involve removing any dead tissue and bacteria from it as well as applying topical antibiotics to help with the healing process. While bandages are being changed, treatment staff can gauge how the healing process is going.

Should you have a wound that will require regular maintenance, The Meadows is ready and willing to help. We know exactly how difficult it can be when your loved one has needs that require professional attention and our staff concerns themselves the utmost with the comfort and well-being of our residents.

If you would like more information, we are always available and happy to advise you. Simply contact us at any time to set up a private tour in order to learn more about what we can do for you.

Short-term and Long-term Care

It doesn’t matter where the home may be, home is still where the heart is.

Questions & Answers about Short and Long-Term Care

When someone is not able to function in his or her daily life as much as they used to, it can be a difficult thing to admit. This is especially true for those who are seniors, as doing so can feel like they are giving up on life altogether when agreeing that making a change may be necessary. Everything – all the comforts of home, so many years of memories, as well as the dignity of self and sense of independence – seems to suddenly be slipping away all at one, but we at The Meadows understand and are here to help.

 

Our patients turn to The Meadows for their long-term care for a multitude of reasons. More often than not, long-term care is simply a way of stating there is no set or scheduled time for discharge. As an example, a patient may require rehabilitation after an injury or a hospital stay and, because the doctor has no method of knowing how long the patient may need around-the-clock care, long-term care services may be recommended. In other situations, it may simply be that the patient will be unable to receive the optimal level of care at home. These occasions may include the following:

  • Dementia and Alzheimer patients
  • Heart attack or stroke victims
  • A fall or accident
  • Any chronic disease diagnosis
  • Renal failure
  • Vision deterioration
  • Auditory deterioration

 

Most often, the decision to put a patient into long-term care comes from a previous short-term stay. The Meadows is a great choice for those involved in this decision because we always work hard to make our patients feel right at home.

Easing the transition from a stay in the hospital to home is the ultimate goal of a short-term stay. There will be therapies provided for the patient in order to help to increase their physical strength as well as their range of motion. We will also take into account any sort of pain management that may be needed by a patient. These types of stays for care most often occur after some sort of fall or a surgery. Also when our patients know that they can rely on us for the things they may need, relief is also given to their caregivers.

 

Short-term care can also be a viable option for anyone who needs help in managing a new diagnosis that they have received. Illnesses such as diabetes or heart disease can mean that new daily routines need to be established and our staff can be there to help.

 

The Meadows staff has a complete and total dedication to the well-being of all our patients. With you and your loved ones, our staff will make sure that the path to wellness is built for your specific needs.