Monday, June 27, 2016

Hospice Inpatient vs. Home Care: Family Views (Research, Culture Video 2:26)

No matter where people receive hospice care, the quality will always depend on the context in which the care is given. Families consider communication and support when they evaluate the kinds of experiences they and their loved ones have had. In order to determine family experiences in evaluating care in inpatient hospices such as nursing homes vs. home hospice care in their own homes, research of the two settings was done with comparisons made. The following study was done to compare inpatient and home care hospice family satisfaction in the two settings.

Survey data from bereaved family members of approximately 1600 patients from a nonprofit, midsized hospice in western Pennsylvania were used. Responses were separated into two groups including general inpatient hospice care and routine home hospice care. Both settings indicated three variables associated with greater overall family satisfaction:

1)   Being kept informed about the patient's condition
2)   Being provided with clear/consistent information
3)   Having the perception that patients were provided with  adequate treatment for anxiety

The following two variables indicated greater satisfaction in routine home hospice care only:

1)   Having sufficient discussion with hospice team members  concerning family members' religious or spiritual beliefs
2)   Being provided with the correct amount of emotional support  after the patient's death

 These results conclude that good communication is strongly associated with greater family satisfaction across hospice care settings. Hospices must ensure that they provide patients and families with consistent information and support.
An important part of communication includes the culture of the hospice families. In a society increasing rapidly in diversity, hospices and other healthcare providers must make every effort to be sensitive and proactive in providing ways to improve communication so a common language can be facilitated. VITAS Innovative Hospice Care demonstrates that in this video in which a patient's family talks about what it means to have a Creole-speaking caregiver bring home care to their 116-year-old patriarch.

Are you curious about who leaves hospice alive? Discharges can occur for several reasons:

Frances Shani Parker, Author
Becoming Dead Right: A Hospice Volunteer in Urban Nursing Homes is available in paperback and e-book editions in America and other countries at online and offline booksellers.

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