The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) has unveiled “Hospice Care,” a new website dedicated to deciding whether you need hospice care and allowing you to compare various hospice care providers. The goal of the website is to give consumers the information that will allow them to be able to make informed health care decisions. For individuals with a terminal illness and their families, this can be invaluable information during a time when decision- making can become extremely difficult.
Information about the available hospice care providers across the nation are listed on the website, which allows patients, their families, and their caregivers to compare providers based on certain metrics related to quality of care. Some of these measures offer percentages on the number of patients:
- Who were asked to discuss treatment options at the beginning of hospice care
- Who were invited to express values and beliefs
- Who were checked for pain at the beginning of hospice care
- Who received a pain assessment if he or she was in pain
- Who were examined for shortness of breath at the beginning of hospice care
- Who were given treatment for shortness of breath
- Who were taking opioids and offered constipation care
With the information that the Hospice Care website provides about your local hospice providers, you can then talk to doctors, nurses, social workers, families, and friends to obtain more information about your options. CMS hopes that this information will allow families to make easier choices about end-of-life care.
No matter the type of insurance coverage involved, choosing between available hospice services and facilities can be a difficult decision. It is hard to determine not only what level of care is appropriate and ensure quality of care, but also to fund that care, whether it is needed for a short or lengthy period of time. Medicaid can be an integral part of funding that care. Hospice care also brings with it the risk of abuse or neglect of your loved one, who may not be able to protect himself or herself. If you or a loved one is in this situation, you should definitely contact an experienced Wisconsin elder abuse and neglect attorney at Boller & Vaughan. We know how to protect your rights and potentially get you compensation for any injuries that have occurred. When professional caregivers fail to meet the duty of care owed to you or your loved one, it is up to you to hold negligent Wisconsin hospice and other long-term care facilities responsible for their actions. Contact Boller & Vaughan today and see what assistance we can offer you and your family.