What is the one word that comes to mind when you hear the word “hospice”? Oftentimes, the word has negative connotations amongst the general population. Many will think death, expense, surrender, etc. but that is not the case! 

Hospice is a unique type of care that emphasizes providing care, dignity, and comfort during a time of great need and emotional stress. The care service specializes in a tailored plan of care created by physicians/clinicians, patients, and family. This service does not have the typical goal of expanding the length of life but rather enforcement of dignity and quality of life.

In the year of COVID-19, this virus has been attributed to taking the lives of hundreds of thousands in the United States. Sadly, the cases have sky-rocketed as winter has slowly creeped in.  In fact, according to the Chicago Sun Times report by Mitchell Armentrout, Illinois has hit the most ever reported COVID-19 cases in any other state with an astounding 15,415 cases in a day, surpassing larger populated states such as California and Florida. 

According to Shelly Cartwright CEO of Illinois based Apex Hospice and Palliative Care, “Hospice and palliative patients are high risk not just for COVID-19, but susceptible to any virus, cold or flu.“ Hospice patients are scared more than ever dealing with this deadly virus, on top of dealing with their pre-existing conditions/terminal illnesses; making it dangerous to be in and out of the hospital. The geriatric immune systems are threatened and challenged day in and day out. Nonetheless,  there are many health care agencies that are able to provide care for those who have COVID 19, in addition to mitigating visits to patients’ homes by utilizing telehealth and wearing full PPE (personal protective equipment) regardless of the circumstances. 

Fortunately, drugmaker Moderna has announced on November 16, 2020 that the vaccine they have created is 94.5% effective. 20 million people will be able to receive the vaccine, first going to those who are at highest risk, like senior residents and health care workers. 

The Meridian Health Care team is fully prepared to safely treat our patients.