Over 80% of Americans want to spend their last days at home, with friends and family. Yet, despite these desires, 75% of Americans will spend their last days in a hospital room with a roommate they don’t know. They will spend hours each day getting painful and often useless treatments and tests, and be asked to take dozens of debilitating drugs. For many the cure is worse than the disease.
When the end comes, family and friends are often tortured with guilt and regrets for years to come because it all ended so badly.
Why can’t every American have the dignified peaceful end they all wish for?
Many doctors will try every drug and every treatment up until the last moment to save a patient even if they know the cause is hopeless. If this is the patient's wish, that is fine. But sometimes in the interest of earning more fees, doctors and hospitals allow patients to be overtreated, over tested and over drugged even when they know the cause is hopeless and even if the patient would really prefer to spend their last days at home.
Hospice Fund of America is a 501(c)3 non-profit, tax exempt organization dedicated to promoting end of life care at home rather than in a hospital so patients can spend their last days in dignity and peace, pain-free in familiar, comfortable surroundings with friends and family.
Here’s what we are advocating:
- It’s a proven fact; patients live longer when cared for at home than in a hospital yet less than 15% of hospitals inform critically/terminally ill patients they have the option of end of life home care. We want to make sure every hospital is required to let patients know they have the home care option.
- If a critically/terminally ill patient is allowed to see a palliative care doctor very early in their illnesss, it has been shown they will suffer less pain, be more comfortable, and patient and family alike will feel better about treatment going forward. Yet today very few patients will ever see a palliative care doctor until it is often too late.
- Home care is being denied hundreds of thousands of patients with Alzheimer's, Heart Disease, COPD, and other diseases because Medicare will not reimburse the home care provider after a certain period – yet Medicare will reimburse hospitals and doctors for unnecessary treatment of these diseases. 80% of these patients would rather be at home and we want to see that Medicare rules are changed so they can be at home.
How you can help:
- Make your end of life wishes known to family and your doctor and encourage your loved ones to do the same. You can use our End of Life Planner to do this.
- Help Hospice Fund of America with our important work to make end of life home care available to ALL Amercians and Donate.