I have always thought that Hospice was an organization that was called in when a family member's life was nearly over. It never occurred to me that their services can be ongoing, as long as six months.
I learned that a re-evaluation can take place and the service can be extended after the six months.
When my husband, Bob Funke, was recently released from the hospital, my family chose to bring him home rather than move him to a nursing home. We made the decision to collectively manage his care for as long as we were blessed with his life.
We planned on how we were going to rent the equipment, the cost of what the items we thought we'd need, and of the medications we knew he had to have.
Our social worker at Lake Regional Hospital gave use the information about Hospice. We selected one provider, Regional Hospice, and they met all of us in the hospital with my husband, to explain the service.
In the week prior to his release from the hospital, we discussed what equipment would be needed for maximum comfort and care. REgional HOspice delivered a bed, wheelchair and bed table. They also have extensive other equipment available for other needs.
They provided all of his medications, colostomy bags, bandages, Boost, bedding and other needs. It didn't matter what he needed, they provided it all. As soon as the decision was made, an angel made the trip to our home to deliver. Whether it was day or night, they came. We had the opportunity for nursing care, spiritual support and aid support. We could have them daily if necessary, or in whatever combination we chose.
We personally chose the nursing care. With so many family members to help with cleaning and cooking, etc., we felt that we didn't need an aid. If I had been alone taking care of him, an aid to help with his bath, with cleaning, and allowing me to go to the store/post office etc., would have been invaluable. The cost to us was zero. What an astounding discovery that this service is available free of charge.
We want to thank the group of angels for their incredible service to our family and to our community.
Our nurses were Michelle Smith and Tasha Melton.
Our spiritual counselor was Tom Ford.
We got advice we needed from Becky Green, the nurse coordinator.
We also discovered that their support to the family of the patient can last up to a year. Once again, thank you Regional Hospice, you are truly a group of angels.