• What was your experiences with hospice nurses?

    Asked by grannys on Friday, December 28, 2012

    What was your experiences with hospice nurses?

    I’ve read about terrible things but I’ve only heard positive experiences from friends that have had them.

    10 Answers from the Community

    10 answers
    • Debbie's Avatar

      Granted - sadly, we've used hospice for 3 family members. As with any profession, there are good and not- so- good nurses. Of the dozen we met, I recall only one who had very little people or communication skills.

      over 5 years ago
    • nancyjac's Avatar

      I don't mean to sound flippant, but are you sure you mean hospice nurses? Legally a hospice is only available to those with a life expectancy of less than 6 months, friends who have had positive experiences with them seems a bit out of context. Their job is to keeps their patients as comfortable and pain free while they are dying.

      over 5 years ago
    • Queen_Tatiana's Avatar

      We had hospice for my father and had a great experience with our nurse. She was everything we could have asked for and more. Going into hospice is hard because at that point you can not deny that the end of life is close, and having a great nurse with wonderful skill in every area was a real gift.

      over 5 years ago
    • Mollie's Avatar

      Without them the last two says would've been UNBEARABLE, literally. My grandma fell into a deep sleep and wouldn't wake, though she would respond to us when we spoke to her and shed say "Love You". After a couple of hours we called hospice, we had signed up the week before, and the came instantly and told us what to do mediation wise and how to turn her. When she passed again they were there instantly and took care of everything. Simply put they are ANGELS.

      over 5 years ago
    • Nomadicme's Avatar

      I know a recently former hospice nurse, she's a nice and cheerful individual. However, when I tried speaking to her about patient care, she seemed quite detached. She just recently left hospice nursing for admin work, that says it all.

      over 5 years ago
    • GregP_WN's Avatar

      We had Hospice Nurse's service for both my Mom and Dad. They were great. It's a terribly hard job to do I would imagine, and takes a special person to do it. Can you imagine working in an environment where your customers are destined to die, most fairly quickly. Bless them for what they do, but for me, I couldn't do it.

      over 5 years ago
    • carm's Avatar

      Grannys, Well you have a loaded question there and as an End of Life Nurse I can say that my opinion is one that would be slanted. However, in my defense let me say that hospice/End of Life nursing is not for everyone. We give up more than most nurses. Our work is not one that can be discussed casually among friends and in fact, we tend to lose more friends because of it. We represent a part of life no one wants to talk about or face. We are called "Grimm Reapers" or "Angels of Death." However we work with drugs in a way that no other nursing discipline can. We give narcotics at strengths unheard of on med/surg, or other units including oncology; all restrictions are off. We assess patients differently as well. We don't do a blood pressure check because they serve no purpose. If your blood pressure is up but you are not expected to live out the week, medicating that issue serves no purpose. We have to talk about funeral plans and advance directives, we hear deathbed confessions, some of which can be quite daunting and are not allowed to chart them, let alone discuss them with anyone. We carry a lot of weight in our hearts. It is not an easy job to prepare a patient to die, especially children. However, we see a benefit and a need for our position in life, and in spite of our personal losses, we see a part of human life that is so personal and so overwhelming that the experience changes our own lives forever. It is an honor to do that work, an honor and a privelege to help set a troubled, pain- stricken soul free, and to know that although we could not save that human life, we did not turn away; we stayed until the end and provided a good death.
      Like any other disipline in nursing there are good and bad. I'm sure that is the case in all professions. But for those we tend to, we are that escort that confidently walks them down that final path into that long good night. We stand at the doorway as they pass through it and come so close to the wonder and awe of the place we send them to. Each and every true end of life nurse knows that experience all too well and at that moment; we know how great it truly is. I would not trade that experience for anything, nor would I trade the opportunity to peer through that thin veil that separates life and death just one more time; there is nothing that compares. If you are considering it, I thought maybe you should try and understand it from our vantage point. Good luck, Carm.

      over 5 years ago
    • Leung's Avatar

      Oh my goodness, I can't say enough about them. I had them for my mom. They were very, very attentive to all of her needs and mine also. They were so kind and giving! There was only one person that my mom did not like, I made a phone call, and we never saw her again. It was a fabulous experience, when the time comes for me, and I so hope it's many years from now, I will not hesitate to use them. You have so much say in what they do, and who comes into your home to help. More than I ever expected. Hope this helps you!

      over 5 years ago
    • Shoeless' Avatar

      A good friend of mine lost his battle with leukemin 4 yrs. ago this month. He was in a hospice for a couple of weeks before they kicked him out. They said he was upsetting the other patients by partying too much. They felt that terminal patients should sit around doing nothing and have very few visitors, and the fact that he had lots of friends who wished to celebrate his life while he was still here was unnatural. He died at home with his entire family and many friends in attendance. But his nurses themselves were awesome - it was the management who weren't.

      over 5 years ago
    • Shoeless' Avatar

      Leukemia - not leukemin. Sometimes my fingers move faster than my brain. My daughter calls it chemo-brain.

      over 5 years ago

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