Palliative care is a relatively new medical subspecialty that helps patients who are living with a serious illness. Its recognition is growing, but people are still confused about what it is and how it differs from hospice care. Jennifer Ritzau, MD, director of palliative care and medical director at HopeHealth, shares five facts to know … Read More
In recent months, America has witnessed three public figures choose comfort care in their last days of life: Barbara Bush, Aretha Franklin and Senator John McCain. Although we don’t know exactly when during the course of their illness they chose to suspend curative treatment, we do know that each of them wanted to spend their … Read More
by Meghan Areson, MSPT, COS-C For people with Parkinson’s disease (PD) and other neurological conditions, it can take a long time to move around and communicate with others in day-to-day living. Standing up is hard. Walking happens in small, shuffling steps. You may speak softly or experience a delay in connecting thoughts to speech. At … Read More
Rosie is a very large and special dog—a 100-pound Leonberger—who brightens the lives of people every day at HopeHealth’s Philip Hulitar Hospice Center in Providence, RI. She has many nicknames, including Fuzzy Bear, Friendly Lion, Gentle Giant and Chocolate Moose. She also has a real job, complete with a job description, ID badge and even … Read More
A golden anniversary like no other For Ellen Aldrich, renewing wedding vows with her husband, Frank, was “a very special, poignant and meaningful moment in our lives,” she tearfully recounted of the September 2016 event. The ceremony, an early celebration of their 50th wedding anniversary, occurred at Hope Hospice’s McCarthy Care Center (MCC) in Sandwich, … Read More
Three decades ago, Marlene McCarthy was diagnosed with breast cancer at the age of 44. She then spent many years in doctors’ offices and clinics, enduring multiple treatments and therapies and suffering intense chronic pain. A few years ago, Marlene’s primary care physician recommended palliative care, leading her to Dr. Jennifer Ritzau of Hope Palliative … Read More
If you’re caring for someone with a serious illness, you know the road can be tough. Caregiving can wear you down emotionally and physically and make it hard to respond to others. Here are some tips to avoid burnout and be ready for the task of caregiving. 1. Know your limits If you can understand … Read More
A diagnosis of Alzheimer’s disease is a devastating reality for so many families. There is currently no cure, and the stress that comes with full-time caregiving can be staggering. Family caregivers often wonder about things like: What will I do if something happens to me? How much does home care cost? What if I don’t have any money? How can I keep my family member safe? What about driving issues? It’s a harsh reality for caregivers to realize that, had they initiated the care planning process sooner, more options for care might have been available to them.