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Jimmy Carter hospice milestone

Wednesday, August 16, 2023

Six months ago, Former President Jimmy Carter elected to start hospice care in the comfort of his Georgia home. As the Value of Hospice in Medicare study shows, at any length of stay, hospice benefits patients, family members, and caregivers, including increased satisfaction and quality of life, improved pain control, reduced physical and emotional distress, and reduced prolonged grief and other emotional distress. More people are choosing hospice than ever before; yet only half of the total number of people who are eligible for hospice care select it.

Hospice care has long been a topic of discussion, often accompanied by misconceptions about its impact on the length of life. Contrary to popular belief, hospice care does not hasten death; its primary focus is to enhance the quality of life for terminally ill patients during their final stages.

Hospice care is a holistic approach that provides physical, emotional, and psychological support to individuals with advanced illnesses. The main goal is to manage pain and symptoms, ensuring patients are as comfortable and pain-free as possible. By addressing the physical and emotional distress associated with terminal illnesses, hospice allows patients to spend their remaining time in a more peaceful and dignified manner.

Research and studies have consistently shown that patients receiving hospice care actually tend to live longer than those who do not. This might seem counterintuitive, but the reason is quite straightforward. When patients are provided with comprehensive pain and symptom management, psychological support, and an environment tailored to their needs, they experience reduced stress and anxiety. This, in turn, can positively influence their overall well-being and potentially extend their life span.

Hospice care also involves family members and loved ones, providing them with guidance and emotional support throughout the process. This collaborative approach not only helps patients maintain important relationships but also allows families to come to terms with the situation, which can alleviate some of the emotional burden associated with end-of-life care.

In conclusion, hospice care is not about hastening death, but about ensuring that patients’ final moments are lived to the fullest extent possible. By focusing on pain relief, symptom management, and emotional well-being, hospice care actually contributes to extending the lives of terminally ill individuals. This approach not only benefits the patients themselves but also provides solace and support to their families during a challenging time.

President Carter continues to have an impact by sparking a national dialogue on the many benefits of hospice. This six-month milestone for the Carter family offers a time for reflection on the importance of planning “a good death.” President Carter is illuminating hospice care and shining a light on the benefits it can provide. To learn more about hospice care, visit our website. Lumina provides hospice care and supportive services to patients and families in Linn and Benton Counties, as well as parts of Marion, Polk, and Lane Counties. If you think hospice might be right for you or a loved one, reach out to us at 541.757.9616.