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 "...I am a traveler on life's journey. I need to be accepted and cared for, and be myself on that journey..." ...a hospice patient

The term hospice is a medieval one. It meant a lodging for travelers, a waystation providing food and comfort to those on a long journey. Today, hospice is a concept of care for people making life's last journey.

The hospice concept is a simple one. It seeks to help improve the quality of life for those patients with a terminal illness, for whom the goal is comfort rather than cure.

Advocate at Home's hospice services seeks to achieve this goal by:

  • preventing and/or controlling pain and related symptoms.
  • allowing the patient to be in control of his/her choices, with an emphasis on quality of life.
  • helping the family participate in caring for their loved one at home.
  • providing emotional/spiritual support for the patient and family, and later providing bereavement services to family members.
  • offering a full scope of health care services to each patient and family

The criteria for admission to our hospice program includes:

  • the patient is in the advanced stage of a terminal illness and has a limited prognosis (six months or less).
  • there is an agreement between the patient, family, and attending physician that palliative care is most appropriate.
  • a local physician will continue to attend the patient.

What Services Does Hospice Provide?

The emphasis of hospice is on home care because familiar surroundings often provide the best setting for care of the hospice patient. Hospice patients and their families receive a variety of services from a team of professional, as well as volunteer, personnel to ensure that the patient can remain in the home environment for as long as possible.

Patients in need of acute inpatient care may be admitted to a unit located at Advocate BroMenn Medical Center. Open visiting hours and a specially trained staff encourages continued involvement of family members and friends in the patient's care.

As an alternative living arrangement, hospice care can be provided in several contracted nursing homes throughout our service area.

Advocate at Home hospice services is licensed by the Illinois Department of Public Health.  It is Medicare certified and a member of the National Hospice and Palliative Care Organization (NHPCO) and the Illinois State Hospice Organization (ISHO).

Hospice services are reimbursed by Medicare, Medicaid, or private insurance. The Hospice Medicare benefit provides additional support beyond traditional Medicare. The complete range of services, however, may not qualify for reimbursement.

As a non-profit program, hospice relies in part on the financial support of friends, community organizations, and grant funding. Tax-deductible donations can be made in the form of bequests, gifts from friends and relatives in memory of loved ones, or contributions from individuals interested in supporting the hospice concept.

How You Can Help

If you or someone you know needs hospice services, or if you are interested in donating time or funding to Advocate at Home hospice services, please contact:

Advocate at Home Hospice Services, 303 Hershey Road, Bloomington, IL 61704  309.268.5930

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