When people have limited life expectancy, they often need full-time support. Many people in Brighton, Eastbourne, Worthing, Crowborough, and the Sussex area choose to use live-in carers rather than hospice services.
Hospices provide communal palliative care for those with a limited lifespan. The purpose of the hospice is to give patients the maximum quality of life possible while minimising pain and discomfort. But although many hospices provide good services, they may not be suitable for all patients.
Live-in care offers several advantages over hospice care for patients who are nearing the end of their lives. Let’s take a closer look.
Although doctors may offer a prognosis for how long a person will live with a particular condition, each person is different. A two-month prognosis could quickly turn into a two-year stay in a hospice, depending on the unique biology of the individual.
Patients with uncertain time horizons benefit from live-in carers. Live-in care allows people to retain their independence for longer, especially when they do not know how much time they have left, by providing a high level of bespoke care, allowing those suffering from terminal illnesses to use the time they have left to the fullest extent possible.
When a person is diagnosed with a terminal illness, they often want to spend their remaining time in a familiar place. Hospices, however, take people out of environments that they are accustomed to, placing them in surroundings which may seem alien. This upheaval can cause additional distress.
Live-in carers provide the support that people need for end of life care, without the upheaval. Live-in carers can provide many of the same services offered by hospice care – such as pain management – all from the comfort of one’s home.
Every patient is different and has specific care requirements. A live-in carer can quickly learn about a patient’s needs whereas hospice staff, who have to deal with a greater number of people, may not be able to offer the same level of bespoke support.
Live-in care workers are trained to deal with all kinds of end-of-life conditions, including degenerative neurological conditions, MS and stroke. Just like hospice staff, they can manage these conditions and provide the appropriate level of care.
Many people facing end of life currently live with their spouse or partner. Whereas hospices separate couples, live-in carers allow them to stay together in the final weeks and months of a person’s life. Those facing the end of life often need the comfort and continual support of a loving partner, something that may be difficult to arrange when staying in a palliative care institution.
Homes are special places. Over the years, people create living environments that they love and feel comfortable in, helping them to relax. Moving to a hospice can sometimes rob a person of that sense of tranquillity, reducing quality of life. Live-in carers not only allow a person to stay in their home but can also help maintain those creature comforts that make life enjoyable.
Animals provide company for many people at end of life. They are vitally important to happiness and wellbeing. Animals are rarely allowed in hospices because of concern that they may pose a health risk to other patients, and so many people must part ways with their furry friends when entering a hospice.
Live-in carers, on the other hand, not only allow patients to continue to live with their favourite pets but can also look after them too. Live-in carers are especially useful in situations where a patient’s condition means that they cannot remember to provide food, or do not have the physical ability to do so.
A live-in carer can help people at end of life to travel and explore, should their condition permit it. Carers act as personal holiday reps, arranging everything from transport to activities. They give patients the opportunity to visit places that they always wished they had been, whereas hospice staff are unlikely to provide the same level of service.
Live-in carers provide a broad swath of benefits for end-of-life care. Not only do they help people retain their independence and continue living in familiar settings, but they can also provide bespoke services, allowing people to get the most out of their lives. Live-in carers help to make life easier for both patients and their families, allowing them to enjoy fully the time they have left.