I’m not a healthcare worker, but because of my familyhistory with cancer will probably need hospice typecare one day (hopefully long in the future).
In the UK we don’t have hospice care of the style you provide. Families do a lot for their loved one of course, but erminal care at home is normally provided by the patient’s GP and their community nurse with respite care in inpatient facilites. We do,obviously, have nursing homes but, although there are some good ones, many offer a less han optimium standard of care. Of course we have a state-run system (notice state-run, not state-paid-for – all working people pay through our taxes, and it isn’t as cheap and efficient as some people would have you believe, but that’s another story).
What a difference it would have made to my mother had she been able to see out her last days at home. Yes,she needed nursing care, but she was so upset at having to be in hospital, and although the medical staff were very dedicated they were overstretched,harrassed and really didn’t have enough time to dedicate to her.
Your type of hospice care really does make adifference to people’s lives, enabling them to live with their illness, instead of dying from it in the time that they have left to them. I really hope that if and when I’m told that I have a terminal illness there is, by that time, your type of care in the UK,with staff that are as dedicated as you obviously are.
I can’t overstate how much being able to stay at home means to many people. If the hospital is not going to do anything that could not be done at home, then I think (and studies confirm) most would rather be at home. This is all contingent on having people who can/will care for you with the help of the hospice team, but for those who do have friends and family who are willing to help hospice is worthwhile because it keeps you at home.
Thanks for the perspective.