Hospice Discussion Tips
- Establish the medical facts. Coordinate with other providers to deliver the same message.
- Set the stage. Choose a comfortable time and place with key decision-makers present.
- Assess understanding of the prognosis. Observe for misunderstandings or denial on part of patient or family.
- Help patient define attainable personal goals. Within the foreseeable future, what would he/she like to achieve? Avoid?
- Reframe those goals, as needed, to align with prognosis. ("I wish we could say you could do ***, but I can't. What you can do, however, is ...") This provides something realistic to look forward to.
- Identify patient/family care service needs. : Before mentioning hospice, ask if any of the following might be helpful: Pain relief, symptom comtrol, help with bathing, emotional/spiritual support, information about financial assistance.
- Introduce hospice "I know a service that can give you the kind of support you need and can help you achieve your goals of ***."
- Respond to emotions and concerns. Acknowledge feelings about hospice. Ask about past experience; dispell myths.
- Make hospice referral