You should always feel at home. Under hospice care, you will. Hospice care designs treatments to meet the needs of patients, providing them comfort in their own homes.

While every hospice regimen is different, four levels of hospice care exist. Here is a quick guide to each level.

Curative, Palliative, and Hospice Care

Curative, palliative, and hospice care each have their own definitions, though they have some overlap.

Curative care creates complete relief from serious illnesses. Doctors diagnose, treat, and prevent symptoms, attempting to cure illnesses.

Palliative care provides comfort and pain management for chronic illnesses. Like curative doctors, palliative doctors diagnose, treat, and prevent symptoms. However, palliative doctors specialize in procedures that assist with chronic illnesses.

Palliative care can accompany curative care. You will not give up curative treatments if you engage in palliative ones.

If a doctor determines that a patient is likely to die within six months, the doctor admits the patient into hospice care. Hospice care uses palliative treatments to treat physical and psychological symptoms alike. However, hospice care employs no curative measures.

Though curative and palliative measures include families, hospice care emphasizes the welfare of families. Families have a voice in their loved one’s treatments and can receive therapy if desired.

Routine Home Care

Under routine care, patients remain at home and receive regular visits from nurses. Care is not around-the-clock. Patients receive services from doctors, including physical and occupational therapy, but other caregivers administer medication and perform other measures.

As hospice doctors tailor treatments to specific patients, regimens may vary. If a patient needs a nurse around-the-clock, they can receive one under routine care. Some patients remain in routine care throughout their time in hospice, while others transition to different levels.

Continuous Home Care

Continuous home care is initiated during times of crisis. If a patient suffers from unrelieved pain, severe anxiety, or any symptoms that necessitate around-the-clock treatment, continuous care becomes available. A nurse will remain in the patient’s home overnight and provide treatments.

A patient may return to routine care, or they can be sent to an inpatient facility. Doctors may ask family members to assist with medical procedures. Families can still select treatments for their loved one.

Respite Care

A family may initiate respite care if they need time off. A patient will be admitted into an inpatient environment for up to five days.

Family members may visit their loved one, advise with doctors, and request that their loved one remain in an inpatient facility during this time. Family members can also receive therapy and treatment if they desire, and they can travel out of the area and spend time at work.

Inpatient Care

If a doctor cannot manage a patient’s symptoms at home, the patient goes to an inpatient facility. Inpatient care manages acute, short term problems, with the intent of discharging patients to their homes.

A patient will remain in inpatient care for as long as they need. Doctors often prescribe aggressive actions to control symptoms, but patients and their families can advise treatments. A patient may be discharged and return home to routine or continuous care, or they may be transferred to a hospice facility.

The Four Levels of Hospice Care Are About You

The four levels of hospice care create a thorough psychological and physical regimen for patients. Treatments are specific to all of a patient’s needs. Families have the power to discuss treatments with doctors, and they can receive therapy themselves.

You have a say in your loved one’s treatments. Bolster your voice with this guide.