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Words to Live (and Die) By: How to Get the Right Hospice

There are many questions to ask potential hospice providers including whether in addition to care at home, which is the norm, care might be available in a facility, and whether they provide respite for family caregivers in the home setting.

For ensuring that your own end-of-life priorities will be honored and respected in hospice, here are key questions to ask:

» What practices does this hospice employ to ensure the ongoing involvement of my loved ones, caregivers and healthcare providers?

» What role will my own physician have once my hospice care begins, and how will they work with the hospice physician?

» Will this hospice provide me with palliative sedation to keep me comfortable until I die if I request it?

» If my pain or suffering cannot be controlled and I choose to voluntarily stop eating and drinking, which is my right, will this hospice support me and my family in that process?

» If I decide to access medical aid in dying and want to obtain a prescription, will this hospice support me and my family in that process? (This question is only applicable in states where medical aid in dying has been authorized: OR, WA, CA, MT, VT as of 10/2016.)