High Peaks Hospice is spreading awareness and facts about the benefits of hospice care in November in recognition of National Hospice Awareness Month. Hospice is a way of caring that enables patients and families to focus on living as fully as possible despite a life-limiting illness.

Most Americans know what they want at life’s end. Staying at home, surrounded by family and loved ones, free of pain with your symptoms under control, and support for your family caregivers. Hospice makes it happen. With the help of hospice, patients and families alike can focus on what’s most important – enjoying life together and living as fully as possible.

Hospices ensure that pain management, therapies, and treatments are all centered on the person’s goals. They provide emotional support and advice to help family members become confident caregivers. Lastly, they offer grief support free of charge to anyone in the community, regardless of hospice utilization.

Serious illness doesn’t wait for a pandemic to end and during an unprecedented time, commitment to providing the highest quality end-of-life care has not changed. Hospice organizations around the country continue to support families in their homes, in nursing homes, and in assisted living facilities… even in rural areas.

Edo Banach, president and CEO of the National Hospice and Palliative Care Organization says “Hospice is a successful model of person-centered care that brings hope, dignity, and compassion when they are most needed.”

What you should know: Hospice care is a benefit covered by Medicare, Medicaid, and most private insurance companies. Eligibility often begins when individuals with a qualifying life-limiting illness such as late stage heart disease, renal failure, COPD, dementia, cancer, etc., receive a prognosis of six months or less. There is no need to wait for a crisis to occur and it is best not to. Hospice care includes all medications, equipment (such as wheelchairs, hospital beds, oxygen), and supplies related to the hospice illness that are needed to address or prevent symptoms or discomfort, typically with no copays or deductibles.

High Peaks Hospice is your local hospice provider covering all of Warren and Essex counties and parts of Washington, St. Lawrence, and Hamilton counties. Anyone can make a referral to High Peaks Hospice – a family member, friend, doctor, nurse, or even the patient themselves. Thanks to the generosity of private individuals as well as community support, no one is refused care due to inability to pay.

Free informational sessions are provided by High Peaks Hospice to any family considering hospice care.

High Peaks Hospice urges that it’s never too early to learn about the befits of hospice care so that you can make an informed choice about the kind of end-of-life care that you wish to receive. They went on to share, “Our patients participate in choices about their care, helping to achieve a peaceful life closure that aligns with their values, wishes, and needs. The feedback our staff hears from families most often is that they wish they called hospice sooner.”

Inquiries about comfort care, caregiver support, and bereavement are welcome at 518-891-0606. All calls are confidential.