Our founder, Dr. Josefina Magno, was a pioneer in the 1970s. She understood that people living with serious illnesses needed substantial and sustained care. As a result of this innovation, there are currently more than 4,300 hospices nationwide, with Capital Caring Health being among the 10 largest, serving nearly 1,400 patients every day.
Keep reading to learn about our caring in-patient and in-home hospice care services.
What is Hospice?
Hospice is a specialized form of health care geared toward patients nearing the end of their lives. Hospice works to treat the person and the symptoms of their disease and provide support to the families of terminally ill patients. The difference between hospice and palliative care is that end-of-life care focuses on pain relief and symptom management and does not provide curative treatments.
At Capital Caring Health, our team of hospice professionals works together to ensure a person’s dignity and quality of life are maintained until the time of their passing. We also work to meet the patient and their family’s physical, social and spiritual needs.
People seek hospice care for themselves or their loved ones when their health significantly declines and their life expectancy is six months or less. Our goal is to show our patients that there is still more to life than their disease.
At Capital Caring Health, the hospice care services you receive will be based on your unique needs. Your unique end-of-life care plan may include the following services:
- A specialized team to help you, including nurses, home health aides, social workers, chaplains, supervising physicians, nurse practitioners and others
- Around-the-clock, on-call support
- Medical equipment and supplies, such as wheelchairs, hospital beds, oxygen, and more
- Medications to control symptoms and pain
- Dietary counseling and physical, occupational, or speech therapy, as needed
- Short-term care in a specialized hospice facility for medically necessary reasons
- Short-term respite care (up to five days) in a facility for those times when family is either unavailable to provide care or needs a break from caregiving
- Counseling support and guidance for patients, families and caregivers through Capital Caring Health’s Point of Hope team
- “Tuck- in” calls two to three times a week from trained Capital Caring Health volunteers to inquire about a patient’s health status, and to help ensure they have sufficient medications, equipment and supplies
We offer both in-patients and in-home hospice care in Virginia, Maryland, and Washington, D.C. Many of our patients receive their care wherever they call home, whether it’s their home, with a loved one, at an assisted living facility, or nursing home.
The Right Time for Hospice
Hospice care supports individuals with terminal illnesses who no longer benefit from curative treatments. Every situation is unique. A person can be in hospice for up to six months or even longer, depending on individual circumstances.
To receive the greatest benefit, a patient should spend at least two to three months in hospice care. This gives patients extended time with family, friends, and pets while remaining comfortable.
While end-of-life care doesn’t prolong life, surveys show that both patients and families are more satisfied the longer a patient receives hospice services. When our comfort care services are sought early, individuals are better able to live their life to the fullest.
As a result, hospice should be considered whenever someone is in the advanced stages of any of the following progressive illnesses:
- Heart disease, especially Congestive Heart Failure (CHF)
- Dementia, including Alzheimer’s Disease, Lewy Body Dementia, Vascular Dementia
- Neurological conditions such as Parkinson’s, ALS (Lou Gehrig’s disease), stroke
- Kidney failure/End-stage Renal Disease (ESRD)
- Lung disease including Congestive Pulmonary Obstructive Disease (COPD), pulmonary fibrosis
Who Pays for Hospice?
It is important to understand what hospice benefits are offered under your specific type of insurance.
- Any patient with Medicare Part A (hospital insurance) can automatically start hospice care by formally “electing” the benefit. Electing means starting this specific part of Medicare Part A. With Medicare, most services are covered at no additional cost or have a small co-payment if care is provided or arranged by your hospice.
- Those with Medicaid as their primary coverage may also elect the Medicaid Hospice Benefit. Most, but not all, state Medicaid programs cover hospice services.
- If you have other types of insurance, hospice care is usually covered. It is best to check with the individual plan or your employer to understand the details and cost of what is provided.
- If you do not have health insurance, our specialists will be happy to speak with you to give you information on what options you do have. No one is turned away for financial reasons.
For more information on whether you or a loved one qualifies, please reach out to one of our care experts today.
Starting Hospice Care
Anyone can contact Capital Caring Health to request a free evaluation from a hospice specialist to see if hospice is the right option for you or a loved one. An official referral is made when you and your doctor decide you would like to receive hospice care. In general, the process for starting hospice care is as follows:
- The person’s doctor and the hospice medical director confirm that the person has a serious illness and is expected to die in six months or less
- The individual selects a hospice.
- The person elects the hospice benefit according to his or her insurance coverage and selects a hospice
- A hospice referral specialist will review the details with you and confirm that the focus of care will be on relief of distressing symptoms and adding support for you and your loved ones.
Sign up to start care now, or call our 24-hour care line at 800-869-2136.
Capital Caring Health: We’re Here to Help
When you think you or a loved one might benefit from hospice care, we have the detailed information and support you need. We’ll help determine your hospice coverage and how to get started. Once you choose to receive hospice services, care usually begins within 24-48 hours, starting with a discussion with a hospice physician about a custom care plan for you. For more information, call 800-869-2136.