Faced with life-limiting illness and an array of medical, social, emotional, and mental concerns, families may feel very uncertain about how to care for a loved one at home. Just the logistics - making sure someone can open the door for a home health aide, for instance, or get to the pharmacy to fill a late-night prescription - can daunt even the best-organized family. Families - and patients - can quickly come to doubt their ability to deal with the illness at home or may question the commitment of the health care system to respond when needed.
Caregivers can feel more confident when they know that they can always reach a health care professional who is familiar with the patient's needs, when they understand symptoms and their treatment, when they know more about disease progression, and when they have time to "recharge."
6.1.1 Case Study - Hospice of Michigan
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This online version of the book Improving Care for the End of Life: A Sourcebook for Health Care Managers and Clinicians is provided with permission of Americans for Better Care of the Dying [ www.abcd-caring.org ] and Oxford University Press. All rights reserved.
For further information on quality improvement in end-of-life care visit The Palliative Care Policy Center [ www.medicaring.org ].