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Hospice

Hospice is a philosophy and a concept of care. It strives to be optimistic but realistic. It endeavors to relieve suffering in any form, whether physical or emotional. As part of the FirstHealth of the Carolinas network, FirstHealth Hospice is a resource for the community in the areas of education, bereavement and adjustment to loss. FirstHealth Hospice is not-for-profit and is the only hospice associated with FirstHealth of the Carolinas.

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Coping with a terminal illness?

What do we do?

FirstHealth Hospice provides compassionate, quality care for persons with a life-limiting illness. Patients and their families have an active role in identifying goals of treatment in collaboration with a team of specially trained professionals that typically includes physicians, nurses, social workers, counselors, nurse's aides, chaplains and support volunteers. As a philosophy and concept of care, Hospice affirms life and neither hastens nor postpones death.

Rather, focus is directed toward maintaining the patient in the home while providing quality of life and assisting the patient and family in maintaining their dignity and independence.

We strive to be optimistic but realistic, relieving suffering in any form, whether physical or emotional. Assigned support staff make regular visits to assess symptom management and ensure that changing needs are identified and addressed. Care is coordinated with the patient's personal physician, and the plan of care is reviewed and updated during meetings of the Hospice staff.

With a nurse available 24 hours a day, seven days a week, patients and their families have peace of mind knowing that support is accessible when needed. 

 

Using a team-oriented approach Hospice offers support and care in the following areas:

 

 

Physician

Offers expertise in symptom management with regards to the end-of-life process. They are available as a resource to hospice staff members and occasionally make home visits on as needed basis. These providers oversee the plan of care and offer suggestions to assist patients with comfort. 

 

 

Nursing

A registered nurse makes home visits to assess the patient’s condition and teach how to care for the patient – especially management of symptoms. How often the nurse visits depends on the patient’s condition and the physician’s instructions. The nurse is in regular contact with the patient’s physician and can help arrange for special equipment or supplies.

24-hour coverage for evenings, weekends and holiday is available to assist with emergencies as they may arise.

 

 

Social Work

Medical social workers visit every family to help determine strengths and needs. They are available to help with emotional support, coordination of resources, problem-solving, personal adjustment counseling, family counseling and referral to other agencies for financial and other help.

 

 

Hospice Aides

Hospice aides are available to visit the home at regular intervals to give baths and shampoos, to help change the bed and to provide other types of personal care.

 

 

Chaplain

Offers spiritual support and counseling. The chaplain can act as a liaison between the patient and their faith community. They provide assistance with memorial and funeral planning as needed. 

 

 

Volunteers

Volunteers act in various capacities and can assist patients by providing companionship and support. This also enables the family to have needed respite or patient sitting. Volunteers are able to utilize their time reading to patients, participating in life review, or sharing other hobbies that may be of interest to the patient. 

 

 

Bereavement Counselors

Assists the family with processing emotions related to grief and loss. Individual, family and group counseling services are available. Services for children and teens are also provided. 

 

 

 

 

 

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