Hospice needed but not wanted by my Mom. Any advice?

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My mother is competent. She's 78 years old with lung cancer. The radiation has scarred her lung so much that she has lost about half of the capacity in that lung. Her oncologist, along with other doctors, has recommended Hospice for palliative treatment. She's been in and out of the hospital, averaging 6 times in three months. She won't do anything to help herself (this has been the case for 20 years). My father died 2 1/2 years ago and I moved my mother from AZ to IN and she lives in a very nice, safe and caring assisted living facility. They have 24 hour nursing and three meals a day. She just got home yesterday from another week's stay in the hospital. I have POA and MPOA, however, like I said she is competent. She doesn't want Hospice to come in for palliative treatment. She expects the nurses, aids and especially me to take care of everything from keeping her fed to cleaning the cat box. How do I get Hospice involved if she refuses?

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As Everishlass mentioned, people often refuse hospice because accepting hospice care means accepting that they will die. As mentioned, palliative care or comfort care are words that are easier for some to accept. However, she'll still know that its hospice care.

I'd ask your chosen hospice how to handle this since this is not a unique situation. It's possible, too, the chaplain of your mom's AL may be able to comfort her by truthfully telling her that many people improve under hospice care and can even go off of it.

I'd do both - ask hospice how to handle this and ask the AL chaplain or her own pastor or Rabbi if she has one, to talk with her. Once she understands that she can go off of hospice when she wishes, she may move forward.

Good luck,
Carol
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The first time Hospice visited my father in law, he threw them out vehemently. They came back. He threw them out again. They sent a companion to sit and talk with him. The man was also a retired teacher. They shared stories of classroom experiences. Slowly, gradually, he accepted their care, and mom got some relief when they came. It's a process, be patient.
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If your mom has nurses and aides I wonder why she won't agree to hospice when they provide nurses and aides as well.

Maybe it's the word "hospice" your mom objects to. It's a scary word and a lot of people are scared of it because they have to face the fact that they may be dying. They see hospice as giving up, giving in. You can try calling it "palliative care" but if she is lucid she's not liable to fall for that.

Talk to a hospice company. Get some information from them. Then talk to your mom again. You can't force it on her but maybe some gentle persuasion will work after you're armed with information.

Also, if she has hospice that would lighten your load considerably as well. You might want to explain that to her too. You're tired, you're stressed, a few extra hands around the house would really help you out. Maybe your mom will respond to that.
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