Losing a loved one is one of the most difficult things that we have to go through. The thought of losing a child is almost too much to bear. It’s not just difficult, it is devastating.
For many years there were very few options for Medicaid coverage when a child was seriously ill. If parents wanted and needed the extra support of hospice services, they were forced to forego curative treatments, but that has since changed. Now there is an option that allows you to keep fighting your disease and get hospice support. Medicaid is now required to pay for both the curative treatments and hospice services so you don’t have to choose.
“A common misconception in hospice is age related. A lot of people think that hospice care is only for the very elderly. That is completely not true. Hospice is a service that can be provided to anyone regardless of age. We only need a qualifying hospice diagnosis or a terminal illness with a life expectance of less than six months to qualify for hospice. We are here and able to serve patients of any age.” Executive Director Dani Castro explains.
When a child has a chronic or life-limiting illness, it can weigh heavy on everyone in the family. Knowing the unique needs of pediatric patients, the Concurrent Care for Children in the Affordable Care Act was formed. This allows chronically ill children to receive hospice services while still fighting their disease with their regular doctors and specialists. This allows pediatric patients and their families to have extra support from a hospice team while still seeing their regular doctors. Through collaborative efforts, the hospice team works alongside the current medical teams to provide in-home personal cares, nurse visits, emotional support, spiritual support, and when working with Heart ‘n Home Hospice there are pre-bereavement services as well.
Pre-bereavement services may be a term that you are unfamiliar with. These services are unique to Heart ‘n Home and have been developed to help the child on services as well as their whole family. We recognize that grieving doesn’t start after a death. It can start long before, as a child/person deals with a chronic illness. With Heart ‘n Home’s pre-bereavement support a pediatric patient and their family can get the emotional support that they need. Often when a child is involved with hospice, they have siblings that are going to need pre-bereavement support to help them process what is happening. The child’s parents will need extra support to help them through the overwhelming grief process that comes with the possibility of losing a child. And the pediatric patient will need extra support in dealing with the though of leaving their family. All of these issues are able to be addressed when a person starts hospice services sooner rather than later. In the best case scenario, a person would benefit most from at least six months of hospice services that way they can take advantage of the emotional and spiritual support that will make for healthy grieving.
If you have a child who has been dealing with a life-limiting or chronic illness, Heart ‘n Home may be able to come in and offer you extra support. We would be happy to speak with you regarding your needs. If appropriate, we can come in and offer support services almost immediately. If your child is not hospice appropriate, we can still help find resources to support you. Contact us today to schedule a free consultation. We are here to help!