Assisted living and hospice care allow mesothelioma patients to live as they choose while receiving nursing care and palliative support for the debilitating disease.
Both forms of assistance provide different types of help at various stages of illness. Assisted living provides personalize services based on the patient’s needs and abilities, ranging from medical support to housekeeping services. Hospice provides end-of-life medical aid to relieve pain, support dietary needs and bolster spiritual care.
Since many mesothelioma patients are diagnosed in the later stages of the disease, they often need assistance beyond what family members and friends can provide. Assisted living and hospice provide services that other providers cannot at a time when patients need it the most.
The services at assisted living facilities vary widely based on the resident’s needs and the facilities offerings. Often, the term “assisted living” is used as an umbrella phrase to cover skilled (nursing) and custodial (non-skilled) care. The following are the types of living scenarios available for mesothelioma patients in various stages of the disease:
Skilled nursing facilities (SNFs), also called nursing homes, provide high levels of medical care. Long-term skilled care may be necessary for mesothelioma patients who need high levels of medical and personal care.
Under federal law, SNFs must provide 24-hour access to trained healthcare professionals, including registered nurses, therapist and physicians who supervise medical care. Skilled nursing care is also available in patient’s homes through home health care services.
Short-term facilities, often called rehab centers, provide care for patients from recovering illnesses, accidents or medical procedures, including cancer surgery.
Custodial care is more closely associated with assisted living because it provides nonmedical assistance. Residents utilizing custodial care typically live in apartment-style settings, either alone or with roommates, and receive daily basic assistance.
Types of assistance include help with bathing, dressing, toileting, cooking and cleaning. Providers are not required to be medical professionals, although it is helpful.
Non-skilled care is available in patient’s homes, called home health care services.
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Hospice services are only available for patients who are terminally ill and have an expected survival time of six months or less. Hospice is focused on improving quality of life through humane and compassionate care.
Hospice care is not intended to hasten death. Instead hospice focuses on treating patients with dignity and respect through palliative or supportive care.
Hospice is intended to be a collaborative effort between patients, their loved ones and caregivers. No one is ever forced to stay in hospice care. Patients can exit hospice at any point to resume active treatment.
The following services are common to all hospice settings:
Experts say medical expenditures in the final year of life for the average person costs at least $18,000. For patients with mesothelioma, the cost can be even higher. The following options are available to asbestos-cancer patients to pay for assisted living or hospice:
Our qualified Patient Advocates put patients in touch with skilled mesothelioma attorneys to access funds to pay for medical care, assisted living and hospice care.
Contact us today to learn more about the free services we offer for mesothelioma patients and their families.
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