When someone is at the end of life, it’s a critical time, affecting not only the person, but family and loved ones, too. Hospice Care Plus, located in Berea, Kentucky, provides compassionate care to those with a serious illness in Estill, Jackson, Lee, Madison, Owsley and Rockcastle counties. Our care focuses on compassion for the patient and family, offering access to medical care 24/7, expertise in pain and symptom management, and a range of services to enhance quality of life and family support. We provide a social worker to help the family access benefits and resources, chaplains to assist with spiritual needs, and nursing assistants to help with personal care. Care is provided regardless of ability to pay.
Grief is a fact of life after a loved one passes, or when other losses are experienced. Our bereavement staff works with family members of hospice patients for up to one year to help them as they grieve their loss. In addition, our they offer one-on-one and group support to the community-at-large, including special services for grieving children. All bereavement services are free.
Hospice Care Plus has one of only four inpatient hospice units in Kentucky: the Compassionate Care Center, for times when a patient isn’t able to stay in the home. It’s designed to feel like home, with large rooms, French doors leading to a private patio, and low patient-to-nurse ratios.
Tom, a farmer, was 50 years old when he heard the news “there is nothing else we can do.” He, his wife of 30 years, and their four children were devastated. Due to the amount of pain Tom was in, he wasn’t mobile and couldn’t sleep. His doctor recommended hospice. Tom had no health insurance. Due to his illness he hadn’t been able to work the farm like he had in the past, so the family was strapped financially. Within a few hours, Hospice Care Plus admitted Tom and provided him with a hospital bed, wheel chair, portable potty and pain medications. Within 24 hours, Hospice Care Plus had Tom’s pain under control. He was able to move about with his wife’s help. The medications and medical supplies were provided to Tom at no cost to him or his family. He spent his last few weeks sitting on the porch in his wheelchair with the love of his life, looking out over the 50 acres that had belonged to his family for six generations. Tom was able to maintain his dignity and be surrounded by his loved ones up to the day he drew his last breath. His wife struggled emotionally with losing her husband. The bereavement staff assisted her in her grief process for 14 months after she lost her husband. Tom’s wife was so appreciative of the help her family received at such a critical time. She is now a volunteer with Hospice Care Plus, helping other wives who are traveling the same journey she took with her husband. She recently said, “I don’t know what we would have done without the help of Hospice. You are in such shock when you find out someone you love isn’t going to get better. You’ve never been in that position and you don’t know what to do. Hospice helped us every step of the way and they were there every time we needed them. When Tom would see someone from Hospice coming, he would break out in a great big smile. He knew they weren’t just helping him, they were helping all of us.”