Yet, only about half of terminally ill people take advantage of
hospice services. That's why, in conjunction with National Hospice
Month, Safe Haven Hospice in central Illinois is spreading the word
about the benefits of hospice care.
Hospice teams such as Safe
Haven help terminally ill patients have the highest quality of life
possible in the time they have left. The teams help patients have
control over their medical care and manage their pain.
The emphasis is on compassionate care and relief of the patient's
symptoms, rather than on curing the patient. True hospice care
abides by the principle to "neither hasten nor delay death."
The belief that everyone has the right to die pain-free and with
dignity is the basis of hospice care, according to the National
Hospice and Palliative Care Organization.
Support to family members also is key. Hospice helps families
prepare for the passing of a loved one by having medical, spiritual
and emotional support available 24 hours a day, seven days a week.
Bereavement care is available to families for up to 12 months after
the death of the patient.
"When faced with a terminal illness, many patients and family
members dwell on the imminent loss of life rather than on making the
most of the life that remains," noted Greg Patterson, executive
director at Safe Haven. "Hospice helps patients reclaim the spirit
of life. It helps them understand that even though death can lead to
sadness, anger and pain, it can also provide opportunities for
reunion, reminiscing, laughter and hope, as well as forgiving and
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Hospice care is covered by Medicare and most forms of health
insurance. Patients are eligible for hospice when a physician
determines they have six months or less to live if the disease runs
its normal course.
Safe Haven serves patients in Christian, DeWitt, Logan, Macon,
Mason, McLean, Peoria, Sangamon, Shelby and Tazewell counties.
Patients can receive hospice care in their own homes, in assisted
living facilities and in nursing homes.
The Safe Haven office is located in Lincoln. The staff can be
reached 24 hours a day at 217-732-5180 or toll-free at 855-879-4096.
[Text from file received from
Safe Haven Hospice]