As we age, hospice is something many people have to consider -- either for ourselves or for our loved ones. In some cases, the idea of hospice puts a sour taste in your mouth, but it doesn't have to.

There are several big misconceptions about hospice and hospice care.

The first is that hospice is all about dying. In fact, hospice is all about living as fully as possible, even when the people receiving care have serious and limiting conditions.

The second big misconception is that hospice care is only for people who are in the active phases of dying. Hospice is available earlier than that, and provides help an care for both an individual and their family. At Emmanuel Hospice, someone who is less than six months from the end of their life qualifies for care.

There are a lot positive things about hospice care.

Hospice care is a benefit included with Medicare, Medicaid and private insurance. It includes help from physicians, nurses, social workers, therapists, and volunteers. It also includes medications, equipment, and supplies necessary to ensure quality of life, and the best symptom management.

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