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Raising Awareness of the Benefits of Hospice and Palliative Care

November 13, 2018

Littleton Regional Healthcare Celebrates November's National Hospice and Palliative Care Month

Littleton, NH - Hospice is not a place but is high-quality care that enables patients and families to focus on living as fully as possible despite a life-limiting illness. Palliative care brings this holistic model of care to people earlier in the course of a serious illness. November is National Hospice and Palliative Care Month and hospice and palliative care programs across the country are reaching out to help people understand all that hospice and palliative care offer.

In recent months, a number of notable Americans have died. They include Senator John McCain, the queen of soul Aretha Franklin, and former first lady Barbara Bush. In many media reports, they were described as having "given up" on curative care late in their lives. Ms. Franklin opted for hospice care; Mrs. Bush received what was described as "comfort care."

It is essential that people understand that hospice and palliative care is not giving up, it is not the abandonment of care, it is not reserved for the imminently dying," said Edo Banach, president and CEO of the National Hospice and Palliative Care Organization. "Hospice is a successful model of person-centered care that brings hope, dignity and compassion when they are most needed. Every year, nearly 1.5 million Medicare beneficiaries receive care from hospices in this country, reports NHPCO. Hospice and palliative care programs provide pain management, symptom control, psychosocial support, and spiritual care to patients and their family caregivers when a cure is not possible.

John Smith, a hospice volunteer at Main Street hospice noted, "Someone asked why I spend time volunteering for hospice. It's because hospice was there for my family at a difficult time in our lives, and because hospice staff provide the best care possible when you need it most. Why do I volunteer for hospice? It's about how you live!" Carrie Way, RN and Palliative Care Coordinator at LRH joins Dr. Phil Lawson, Board Certified in Hospice and Palliative Care to ensure that each patient receives the care they choose. They work with families of those who are terminally ill to assist them through the process of end of life care for their loved one. This service is so very important to individuals who are facing the most difficult time of their lives to ensure the transition is as comfortable as possible. They provide the most compassionate care to patients and their families.

Throughout the month of November, Littleton Regional Healthcare will be joining organizations across the nation hosting activities that will help the community understand how important hospice and palliative care can be.

More information about hospice, palliative care, and advance care planning is available from Carrie Way, RN, Palliative Care Coordinator 603-444-9000 or from NHPCO's CaringInfo.org.

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