for caregivers

Being a caregiver for the first time to someone who has a life limiting illness can be scary, intimidating, tiring and even frustrating at times, but the hospice team is here to support you and give you the training needed to care for your loved one. Becoming a caregiver for a loved one allows you to educate yourself about serious illnesses while taking care of someone you love. The hospice team is not meant to take the place of the primary caregiver, but to supplement the care already being provided to the patient.

A hospice caregiver may provide physical care and comfort care to the patient.

Some responsibilities of physical care are:

  • Basic medical care that could involve cleaning and changing bandages on wounds, obtaining their vital signs and catheter care
  • Knowledge and use of the patient’s medical equipment including wheelchairs, oxygen machines and hospital beds
  • Ensuring the patient has all their prescriptions filled, medications are given in the correct dosages at the proper times and notifying the hospice when running low on medications
  • Assisting with the patient going to the bathroom, bathing, grooming, meal preparation and helping keep the patient clean and comfortable

Some examples of comfort care are:

  • Sitting and talking with a patient confined to their bed while they eat a meal or even bring in your own meal to eat with them
  • Open the curtains and let the sunshine in the room
  • Watch your favorite programs on tv together instead of having the tv on nonstop
  • Invite friends and family over to visit
  • Plan day trips to local places of interest