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Frequently Asked Questions

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What is Hospice?

Hospice is a philosophy of care for people with a life-limiting illness. It is designed to provide comfort and care while ensuring respect for their quality of life. It also supports patients with pain and symptom management needs who have chosen comfort rather than curative care. Ultimately, hospice serves the patient and family together, caring for their physical, emotional, spiritual, and practical needs.

Who qualifies for hospice care?

Patients whose physicians have given a prognosis of approximately six months or less, if their disease follows its normal progression, qualify for hospice care.

What if the patient lives longer than six months?

As long as the physician continues to certify the appropriateness of the patient for hospice care and the patient meets the guidelines, hospice care will continue after six months.

Will the patient keep his or her primary doctor?

Hospice encourages the patient and his or her family to keep their primary physician. The nurse communicates with the primary physician regularly. This keeps the doctor updated on the patient’s condition and addresses any changes needed in the plan of care. The patient may choose to have the hospice medical director as their primary physician or if the patient does not have a primary physician.

What happens in the first 48 hours of hospice services?

The nurse or social worker will visit within 24 hours of referral. The patient will sign an informed consent and hospice election, and the nurse or social worker will review financial and insurance information. A complete physical assessment will be done by the nurse who will collaborate with the physician on the hospice care plan developed with the patient and family. Helpful suggestions will be given to the patient and family regarding daily care and comfort measures. A schedule for visits will be developed, and the nurse will communicate with other services needed.

How do we get the medicines?

The hospice nurse will obtain an order for the medication from the physician. Red Rock Hospice has contracted pharmacies to provide the medicines needed for the patient’s primary diagnosis and are included in the hospice formulary. A 14-day or less supply is ordered at one time. All new medications require approval from Red Rock Hospice. The nurse will review your medication supply with you on home visits to ensure you have the medications you need.

Does hospice cover equipment and supplies?

Hospice covers basic medical equipment like hospital beds and wheelchairs as well as items like dressing change supplies and medications for the terminal illness.

How often will a nurse visit and how long does the visit last?

It will vary according to the patient and family needs. Most patients are initially seen by a nurse two to three times per week, but visits may be more or less frequent based on the needs of the patient and family.

What if we don’t want all of the discipline to visit?

The patient and family are free to decide which services they feel they need. A nurse, chaplain, and medical social worker are the essential services needed to ensure the patient’s plan of care is responsive to his or her needs.

May the patient has physical, occupational, or speech therapy?

The patient and family are free to decide which services they feel they need. A nurse, chaplain, and medical social worker are the essential services needed to ensure the patient’s plan of care is responsive to his or her needs.

What happens if we have a problem after hours?

Red Rock Hospice is available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. After office hours, you can call us at 702-540-7707, and an ON-CALL Nurse will assist you in your hospice needs.

How long can hospice patients live?

Hospice patients' life expectancy varies based on their health status, diagnosis, and individual situation. Normally, those with a life expectancy of six months or less are given hospice care, but some may live longer if their condition is stable or if they respond well to treatment.

How is hospice paid for?

Hospice is paid by Medicare, Medicaid, and most private insurance plans.

Will the nurse be drawing blood?

Blood draws are not usually considered comfort care but will be provided to manage symptoms

Can you call 911 while on hospice?

You can call 911, but we ask you to please call Red Rock Hospice first for all of your urgent needs. We will facilitate any care you may need. This will ensure your care needs will be handled in the way that you desire.

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