Saturday, April 24, 2010

What does it mean?

Yesterday, my dad signed the papers for hospice. I am not sure about all the implications of this. It seems to mean no more doctors' appointments. I feel a bit nervous about this. We didn't go see the cardiologist or the nephrologist before we canned traditional medicine. I hope that wasn't a mistake.
The physician's assistant we saw on Thursday afternoon seemed to suggest it was too early to sign my dad up for hospice, but he wanted to be sure he never had to go back to the hospital, and I respected those wishes.
Of course, my mom still has doctors' appointments. It would make sense to put her on hospice too, but I don't think she qualifies for it yet.


Lou said...

In both cases--my mother and my father--when I made the decision to call for hospice care, a series of people came out to talk with me. One was always a sort of social worker who explained clearly what hospice entailed BEFORE I went ahead. Hospice does not mean that someone is near death necessarily. It does mean that there is no cure, so it is time to focus on comfort instead of on intrusion. In asking for hospice help, you aren't sentencing your father to his death, Robbi. You are taking care of him, as you have been all along.

Anonymous said...

Your Dad is tired.


Robbi said...

That's what happened Lou. Two nurses came out to explain to my dad and to me that hospice is not about euthanasia (not that I thought it was, but he feared it was) and that he could change his mind if he wanted to. He also wanted to be sure that they would not take his medication away from him. In his case, that would be particularly bad because without the psychiatric medication, he would be impossible to deal with. He would have to be transferred to a nursing home.
But I'm unsure whether I should call those doctors from the hospital and tell them he has gone on hospice, as I did his regular doctor, or just not call them at all, or what.