Compassionate COPD Care: United Hospice’s Approach to Chronic Illness

By Dr. Domenic Monaco

Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease (COPD) is a progressive disease causing over 15 million adults in the United States to struggle with impaired airflow, gasping for breath, coughing, wheezing, and chest tightness. These symptoms not only disrupt patients’ everyday activities and degrade their quality of life, but the disease is also the fourth leading cause of death in the United States. With COPD, patients face an ongoing battle against the gradual decline in their health. Effective management of COPD can significantly alleviate symptoms and enhance the functional abilities, and overall quality of life for patients. This underscores the criticality of early diagnosis and prompt initiation of suitable treatments. By addressing these aspects, individuals with COPD can experience a substantial improvement in their well-being. The provision of compassionate hospice care is often the best course of treatment to help mitigate challenges COPD patients face and to support an improved quality of life – this is where United Hospice shines.

United Hospice’s Commitment to COPD Patients

At United Hospice, we are deeply committed to offering compassionate care for COPD patients. We understand that COPD, a condition without a cure that tends to worsen over time, calls for a specialized approach. When COPD reaches its advanced or end-stage, opting for hospice care is not a surrender; it signifies a shift in control and a declaration of personal choice. We design our care plans with a focus on relieving symptoms, improving quality of life, and considering the patient’s overall well-being. It’s important to note that not all medications are discontinued under hospice care, especially those that help manage other medical conditions. At United Hospice, our goal is to provide comfort and support to both the patient and caregivers, underlining our dedication to enhancing the lives of those battling COPD.

Holistic Care for COPD Patients

Holistic care is a comprehensive approach to treatment that addresses the whole person, not just the physical symptoms of a disease like COPD. This approach understands that a patient’s emotional and psychological well-being significantly influences their overall health. At United Hospice, we apply this methodology to our patient care, and it offers several benefits.

United Hospice is dedicated to providing specialized care throughout Orange and Rockland counties. Our mission is to bring comfort, hospice care, and emotional support to those nearing the end of life. Our team of dedicated professionals, including RNs, Social Workers, Chaplains, and Physicians, make regular home visits to ensure excellent patient care and customer service.

Our holistic approach involves personalized care plans tailored to individual needs. Coping with a time-limiting illness such as COPD extends beyond physical symptoms. We recognize that individuals navigating this journey often grapple with substantial emotional distress and fear as they face the unknown. That’s why our dedicated staff and volunteers go beyond providing medical comfort to offer emotional support, spiritual counseling, and therapies. From massage to music and pet therapy, our offerings are curated to enhance the quality of life for our patients. Our team supports patients in managing their mental health and encourages involvement in local support groups. The dedicated team at United Hospice strives each day to honor life, bring comfort, and provide patient-centered care so that our patients can focus on what is essential: making memories with their families when time matters most.

“United Hospice helped my family tremendously by caring for my mother when she was terminally ill. It was much more than one kind person taking care of my mother. It was a well-coordinated team effort and humanistic approach that made an awful experience bearable. Thank you to all of the wonderful and caring people who helped ease my mother into her end of life through the high level of care provided.” Jim Burton

When to Consider United Hospice for COPD Patients

As the final stages of COPD approach, patients often grapple with a steep decline in overall health condition, exacerbated symptoms, and an increased dependency on family members and caregivers for accomplishing everyday tasks. It’s during this critical phase that the option of hospice care becomes considerably significant. United Hospice extends its hand to such individuals, offering comprehensive support and compassionate care, ensuring their remaining days are as comfortable and dignified as possible.

At United Hospice, we advocate for early hospice planning. This allows patients to focus on symptom management, provides time for informed decision-making, and fosters open discussions about feelings, fears, and wishes. It culminates in better care, improved communication, and emotional preparation, ensuring that the patient’s preferences and values are honored throughout their end-of-life journey.

Who Pays for Hospice Services

Facing the reality of a serious illness or end-of-life journey for a loved one adds significant stress to families, with the potential financial burden of medical expenses often intensifying that stress. Misconceptions and misinformation about hospice service expenses can lead to hesitation in seeking such care, driven by the fear of incurring substantial medical bills. However, it’s crucial to understand that most hospice services, including those offered by United Hospice, are covered by various funding sources. These include Medicare, Medicaid in the State of New York, the Veterans Administration, and numerous private health insurance policies. As part of our commitment to transparent communication and comprehensive care, we at United Hospice will confirm your coverage with your health insurance provider and inform you about any potential charges, ensuring you’re well-informed about your financial responsibilities.

The United Hospice Commitment

United Hospice’s commitment to patient care is reflected in the exceptional ranking it holds among community-based hospices regarding nursing minutes provided daily to patients. On average, United Hospice provides an impressive 28.3 minutes of nursing care per day for each patient, significantly surpassing both the national and New York state averages. We continuously strive for excellence, ensuring that our patients receive the highest quality of care and support during their end-of-life journey.

At United Hospice, we understand the unique challenges faced by individuals with COPD and their families. Our specialized approach to hospice care focuses on providing comfort, symptom management, and emotional support to enhance the overall well-being of our patients. With a holistic perspective and a commitment to compassionate care, we aim to honor life and make every moment count for those battling COPD.

It’s never too soon to reach out to our experienced staff who can offer invaluable guidance. Get the answers you need to make the best decisions for you and your family. We are here 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. Call 845.634.4974.