When asked, the majority of people will say that if given a choice they would prefer to die at home and not in a hospital setting. Avoiding unnecessary trips to the emergency department is key to supporting that wish and helping patients and their families create a more positive end-of-life experience.
A study published in Health Affairs shined light on some tough end-of-life statistics:
Over half of those who were not receiving the support of hospice visited the hospital at least once their last month of life. By contrast, only 10% of people who were enrolled in hospice had an emergency department visit or hospital stay during their last month of life.
Equally as tough to learn is the outcome of those emergency room visits. Three-quarters of those patients were admitted to the hospital during which time two-thirds of them would die during their stay.
Nursing home residents who are enrolled in hospice are significantly less likely to be sent to the hospital at the end of life by a margin of 24% to 44%.
Helping hospice patients with complex medical conditions and life-limiting illnesses better manage both pain and symptoms can reduce trips to the emergency department that will likely end up with an admission to the hospital. That improves the quality of life for both patients and their families.
Altruist Hospice can support our physician and senior living partners’ goal of keeping patients and residents out of the hospital by:
Providing hospice care and services in whatever setting the patient calls home
Educating the patient and their family on the disease process and what to expect
Coordinating care across all disciplines
Using adjunct therapies to better manage anxiety and stress
Providing a continuous level of care if a crisis develops
Being available to respond to patients and families 24/7
If you are a physician or health care professional who would like to learn more about how Altruist Hospice can help you decrease hospital readmissions, please call us at 214.328.8600.