Despite the many advantages hospice services can provide, some people still have questions or may
believe many of myths they hear about hospice. These questions and myths remain because death can
often be an uncomfortable topic for us to talk about. Hopefully the information below will help create a
better understanding of what hospice is really all about.
One of the most common myths that remains is that by enrolling in a hospice service, it means that the
patient, or their family, is giving up on the idea of living. However, this isn’t true. Choosing hospice
means focusing on quality of life. Some hospice patients actually live longer because of this
commitment to quality of life and quality care with hospice. Our mission at Hospice of Tift Area is to
serve the needs of individuals with a life-limiting illness, to improve their quality of life, and to support
the family both during and after the illness.
People may also associate hospice with leaving their home for some sort of facility, but this is also a
myth. Hospice is a service rather than a place. While some hospice patients do receive care in assisted
living and skilled nursing facilities, most patients receive care in their own homes. This is one of the
many benefits to hospice, as it allows the patient to remain in the comfort of their home, while still
receiving expert care.
Another myth about hospice is that it is too expensive. The fact is, hospice is a covered benefit under
Medicare, Medicaid, and many private insurance companies. Non-profit hospices like Hospice of Tift
Area also serve patients whether they have insurance or not. All hospice providers are independent
from each other and can be for profit or non-profit, like Hospice of Tift Area. On average, non-profit
services like Hospice of Tift Area spend 25 percent more time caring for each patient than for profit
hospices, and they provide care in the patient’s home more often as well.
Many people associate hospice with patients who have cancer, but this is another myth. It is not limited
only to those with a cancer diagnosis. Patients with conditions like Alzheimer’s, Parkinson’s disease,
Congestive Heart Failure, and many other conditions may also qualify for hospice care. Hospice serves
people of any age, including pediatric patients, who have a terminal illness with limited life expectancy.
If you are a patient or family member of someone with a terminal illness, you may be waiting for your
physician to bring up hospice. However, most doctors wait for the patient to bring the subject up. This
often leads to late enrollment, with many families and patients saying they wish they had enrolled in
hospice sooner. We encourage you to be your own advocate and initiate this conversation with your
physician. Taking this initiative allows you to access the many hospice services at the right time for you
or your loved one.
To learn more about Hospice of Tift Area, visit https://mysouthwell.com/hospice/. To request an
appointment with Hospice of Tift Area, call 229-353-6330.