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What Is Hospice Respite Care?

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nurse places hand on woman's back while discussing what hospice respite care isWhile you have likely heard of hospice respite care, you may not know exactly what it is. When a loved one is receiving hospice care, it is a type of palliative care that focuses on helping a person to manage their symptoms and improve their quality of life as they approach the end of life. Being a caretaker during such a time can be overwhelming. Respite care is a type of support that can also be offered to families and caregivers during this time, offering short-term relief. That is why hospice respite care is vital to both the patient and the caregiver.

If you or a loved one are interested in learning more about hospice and respite care, contact Compassus today at 833.380.9583. Our hospice respite care is designed to provide relief and support to families. Our team of compassionate caregivers will ensure the highest level of care is provided throughout this difficult journey. We will provide your loved one with the best quality of life during their end-of-life care.


What Is Hospice Respite Care?

Respite care is short-term relief for in-home hospice caregivers. Hospice respite care enables the caregiver to rest and recover from the demands of daily in-home care. Respite care is also appropriate when a patient’s medical condition warrants a short-term inpatient stay for pain or other symptoms that cannot be managed at home.

Elements of hospice respite care include the following:

  • In-home services provided by a professional nurse and certified hospice aide for short periods of time
  • Short-term inpatient stays at a hospice facility
  • Care provided by volunteers, family members, or other individuals with special training for short periods of time
  • Counseling and support services to the family

Hospice respite care is an important part of supporting a loved one at the end of life. It helps to ensure that caregivers have the respite they need to maintain their own well-being and continue providing exceptional care for their loved one.

Do I Need Hospice Respite Care?

There are some signs that you or a family member may benefit from hospice respite care:

  • You are physically or emotionally exhausted
  • Caregivers needing help with complex pain or other symptoms
  • You would like to attend an important or required life event
  • You are ill and need time to recover
  • You feel overwhelmed with the responsibility of caregiving

If you or a family member is displaying any of these signs, then hospice respite care may be a great option. It will help you or your family member get the rest and emotional support needed to care for a loved one.

How Do I Pay for Hospice Respite Care?

Medicare benefits pay for patient transport and up to five consecutive days of inpatient care at a Medicare-approved nursing facility or hospital. You can get respite care more than once, but only on an occasional basis.

Medicare guidelines allow for more than one respite occurrence, with each period lasting no more than five days in a row. The five days of respite include the day of admission but not the day of discharge.

Please keep in mind the following:

  • Care must be prearranged and approved by the hospice provider
  • Continuous home care is not Medicare approved as respite care
  • Hospice respite is not generally appropriate for patients in a nursing facility with24/7 care
  • Talk with your hospice provider about Medicare respite rules. They have experience with the sometimes complex Medicare and state rules regarding hospice respite care

Family members who take time to rest and recover are better hospice caregivers. They suffer less burnout and have more energy to devote to loved ones.
Restoration comes from knowing your source of joy so you can share that comfort with others. Sometimes it’s giving yourself permission to rediscover a hobby or try a new one. Reconnecting with friends can recharge your soul.

Find Relief with Compassus

Our volunteers offer caregivers the gift of free time to take care of daily duties. All of our volunteers are professionally trained. Volunteers provide companionship to the patient and respite for the caregiver, including:

  • Friendly visits
  • Reading to patients or writing letters
  • Light housekeeping and meal preparation
  • Running errands
  • Hair care

To learn more, contact Compassus today at 833.380.9583. We’ll help you find the support and respite care that best meets your needs.