When should you have the conversation?
At Hospice of Chattanooga we believe now is the right time to talk about how you want to spend the final weeks and months of life. It important that we make our wishes known, long before we enter a medical crisis and while we still have a voice to express how we want to live.
Having the hospice conversation begins with your physician. Ask your doctor to explain to you the advantages of hospice care compared to aggressive treatments aimed at extending life. Ideally, this discussion should take place annually during your routine wellness exam.
If you are already diagnosed with a life-limiting illness, you should have the hospice conversation each and every time you visit your doctor. It’s important to remain educated on all of your options. We believe there will come a point in time when hospice care is the best choice for you and your family. Hospice is designed to treat the medical, emotional and spiritual needs you and your family will face while helping ensure that this journey is meaningful and free of pain.
Maybe you aren’t the person in need of hospice care. Maybe you are visiting this site to learn about hospice care for a loved one. We know this is a sensitive subject to discuss. Be sure to choose the right time and place and plan out your conversation ahead of time. Let the discussion unfold naturally and be flexible. It’s possible you may have to revisit the idea of hospice care again at a different time.
Every moment matters. Not just now, but at the end-of-life, too. Don’t wait to make your decision known. Have the hospice conversation with your physician and loved ones today.
What services do we provide?
At Hospice of Chattanooga our care is family focused. We understand that the end-of-life journey can be demanding and stressful for everyone involved. In addition to meeting the patient’s medical needs, our staff works very hard treat the emotional and spiritual needs of the patient’s loved ones, too. We offer the following services to our hospice families:
In addition to providing hospice or end-of-life care, Hospice of Chattanooga also has a palliative care program. Born from the hospice movement, palliative care is a special program designed for the chronically ill and individuals faced with multiple illnesses. Unlike hospice, patients enrolled in palliative care services are not terminally ill. The goal of palliative care is to help chronically ill individuals maintain their routines and day-to-day life as much as possible. Hospice of Chattanooga has its own palliative care clinic where patients can come and receive care that will manage their pain and symptoms.
In addition to providing hospice and palliative care, Hospice of Chattanooga also has special programs for children facing a life-limiting illness. To learn more about our pediatric and perinatal programs, click here.
How do you know when hospice care is appropriate?
To be appropriate for hospice care, an individual should have months, rather than years left to live. However, many people misunderstand what hospice care is. They think enrolling in hospice is giving up on life and wait until the very final hours to call the Hospice of Chattanooga care team. We encourage you to take advantage of our services sooner. We need time to do our very best work.
So how do you know if itís time to seek the care of Hospice of Chattanooga? Here are a few of the signs and symptoms that suggest your loved one would benefit from hospice care:
There is one sentence we at Hospice of Chattanooga hear repeated over and over again. Patients and families tell us countless times each year, ďWe wish we had called Hospice of Chattanooga sooner.Ē Donít wait until itís too late to benefit from all the help we can offer you and your loved ones. Call the Hospice of Chattanooga main telephone number (423) 892-4289 today and learn more about the family focused care provided by our agency. You donít have to do it alone.
Why should you choose Hospice of Chattanooga?
Until you are reading this you may have thought all hospice is the same. It is not. In your county there may be as many as six different hospice providers. Hospice of Chattanooga is the only not-for-profit, community-based hospice while the others are operated by for-profit companies.
We know how important it is to choose the best hospice provider for you and your family. Not all hospices are the same and we believe Hospice of Chattanooga provides a higher level of care. Here are the top reasons why we believe Hospice of Chattanooga is the area’s best choice for you and your family at the end-of-life.
REMEMBER to ask for us by name when talking to the doctor, referral nurse or case manager. Say our whole name: Hospice of Chattanooga.
You can be sure you're choosing this area's hospice with the most experience and expertise!
Where is hospice care provided?
Hospice care is provided in a variety of settings. Ideally, hospice care is provided in the patientís own home environment. The Hospice of Chattanooga care team will travel to the patientís private home to provide care on a regularly set schedule.
There are times, however, when the patient requires around-the-clock care and assistance. Hospice of Chattanooga also treats patients who live in nursing homes and assisted living facilities. Our hospice care team offers an additional layer of support and end-of-life expertise beyond what the assisted living facility or nursing home staff offers.
In some instances patients approaching the end-of-life will experience a high level of pain and need to be admitted into the hospital to get that pain under control. Hospice of Chattanooga also assists patients residing at hospitals in our region. We also have our very own Hospice Care Center, where patients can come and receive 24/7 end-of-life care for as long as needed.
Who pays for hospice care?
If you or the patient you are concerned about is on the Medicare program, then Medicare will cover the full cost of hospice care. This means the patient understands that they will no longer seek traditional, agressive medical treatments aimed at finding a cure for what is classified as a terminal diagnosis. Please note that this payment does not cover the cost of room and board, so if your loved one will be living in a facility, make sure your nurse or social worker explains what might be out of pocket expenses for you and what Medicare or Medicaid will cover.
Our hospice services are covered by Medicare, Medicaid and most private insurance plans.
The Hospice Medicare benefit covers all services related to the terminal illness:
As your only not-for-profit hospice provider, Hospice of Chattanooga never turns away a terminally-ill individual because of an inability to pay for our services. We rely on support from the community and donations made to The Hospice of Chattanooga Foundation subsidize our non-reimbursed care.
For more detail on what Medicare will and will not pay for, click here.