Uncle Johnny is 92, was living independently, but has been saying for a while he wants to die, mostly because of acute shortness of breath. He was still capable of going to the store by himself in the trips run by his senior apartment building, but passed out after the last trip and was hospitalized. He was treated for pneumonia then moved into inpatient hospice just until his acute symptoms were managed.

He was sharp as a tack and mentally all there until yesterday or so, and now for the first time he is hallucinating, agitated, wants me to come immediately and get him out of there, mistrusts the nurses because they won't give him his walker, etc. I just realized that of course, since he is in hospice he is no longer being given antibiotics and this could be the UTI talking.

Does hospice never treat for acute things like a UTI? Can we request that he be treated?

Its hard to know because after saying regularly that he just wants to die, now he is saying that he's sad he has to go. I would sure rather he stayed around for a while, but want to respect his wishes .

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I cannot believe that he wouldn't be treated for acute UTI. That is saying that ANY treatment is wrong and in fact this mission of hospice is to do treatments only to alleviate pain and suffering. I can tell you for SURE that would be treating a UTI which can cause very acute suffering. I hope you van come to some understanding with them.
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Reply to AlvaDeer

When mother was on palliative care (in Canada - like hospice) they told me she would be treated for infections with antibiotics. Find out what their policy/practice is. Who has medical POA? They should be informed of decisions like that by the hospital.
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Reply to golden23

Has he been tested for a UTI?

You say that he was moved into inpatient hospice just until his acute symptoms were managed. Why do you think that they wouldn't give him antibiotics for a UTI?
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Reply to BarbBrooklyn

Something sounds odd, being moved into hospice until acute symptoms are under control sounds contradictory to what hospice does and is geared towards.

I think that it is common for people to be sad that they have come to the end of their lives. Something so final that it is hard to comprehend the multitude of emotions that happen.

I would clarify with hospice that he is suffering from the UTI and it needs to be treated. He should not be feeling so agitated, that is not what hospice represents, it should be easing his transition.

I am sorry for your loss and I pray that the hospice treats your uncle and gives him the best care for a peaceful passing. May your family receive grieving mercies and comfort during this difficult time.
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Reply to Isthisrealyreal

Thank you, this is helpful. Yes, he is in an inpatient hospice facility just until symptoms are managed, we'll be moving him to skilled nursing where he'll continue with hospice care as soon as we find a place.

It sounds like they are going to treat him for the sister and I thought all treatment for such things stopped in hospice but I'm glad we were wrong. It just disturbs me that they didn't seem to know, from his hospital records, that he had a UTI and needed me to ask them to check!
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Reply to vegsister

Hugs to Vegsister for helping to navigate the hospice journey with your uncle. I know the hospices that I have dealt with for family members and also as a nurse in an AL, the hospice will say that they will not even bother testing the urine and just go ahead and start an antibiotic immediately to ease the symptoms. The goal is to ease the patient's suffering; if this not happening please discuss with your hospice nurse. These nurses and aides rom hospice are truly angels of mercy and want to ease your LO pain and suffering.
Helpful Answer (1)
Reply to LadyJ67

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