Comforting Care Services has a team of nurses offering nursing care to hospice patients. Our services are broad and all-encompassing, but designed to meet the needs of every patient diagnosed with a terminal illness and their family members.
The Role of a Hospice Nurse
A hospice nurse is the key medical professional supporting patients nearing the end of their life. Nurses ensure doctor’s orders are carried out and patients are as comfortable as possible.
- Vital Signs Monitoring: A nurse will routinely check the patient’s body temperature, pulse rate, respiration rate, and blood pressure. The hospice nurse will record any medical concerns, interpret the implications of these symptoms and signs for the patient, and report abnormalities in vital signs to the patient’s doctor.
- Medication Administration & Management: A hospice nurse will ensure the patient feels as comfortable as possible by administering pain medication and other necessary treatment. The nurse will document the patient’s symptoms and consult with a physician to ensure the patient is receiving the highest quality of care possible.
- Pain Management: To better care for a hospice patient, the nurse will ask the patient to describe their pain and note changes in types and level of pain. The nurse will take steps to ensure the patient receives the right pain medication on time.
- Crisis Assistance: Patients receiving end-of-life care often experience crisis situations. A hospice RN will help family and caregivers navigate these crisis situations. Hospice nurses are often instructed to DNR, or do not resuscitate, hospice patients who stop breathing or have heart problems. Hospice RNs are not supposed to extend a hospice patient’s life. These medical professionals are trained to know when to provide medical attention and when to not intervene. Hospice RNs help family members, caregivers, and even the patient understand the reasoning behind their medical decisions, and instruct the family to focus on the patient’s ultimate needs in crisis situations.
- Psychosocial Support: Hospice care deals with the complex psychological and social aspects of death. The patient and their family members need mental, emotional, and social support. Hospice nurses often develop a close relationship with their patients and their families while providing hospice care. To maintain a high quality of care, hospice nurses remain professional and compassionate while offering critical mental and social support to the patient and their family.
- Spiritual Support: As a hospice patient nears the end of their life, their family members may need social and emotional support. Hospice nurses provide critical assistance and kindness to patients and their families facing thoughts of death and loss. Religious and spiritual comfort can help hospice patients feel calm and relaxed about death.
- Family Caregiver Education: Throughout the entire process of hospice care, a hospice nurse educates the family about upcoming events to give them a sense of control. Hospice nurses provide updates to family members regarding the patient’s condition, changes to medications, and ways to provide comfort from pain. Hospice nurses provide family members and caregivers with the resources they need to cope with a difficult situation.