Golden LivingCenter-Columbus are joining other hospice care organizations across the nation in celebrating National Hospice and Palliative Care Month during November. The holiday recognizes the compassion and dedication of the caregivers who provide these important services.

This year’s theme is Hospice. Helps. Everyone. With this theme, we are reminded of how hospice helps patients and family caregivers live as fully as possible bringing compassion, hope and dignity when they are needed most. Beyond the physical relief, hospice strives to help patients and families find emotional and spiritual comfort during this time.

Every year, nearly 1.6 million patients receive hospice and palliative care in the United States. Hospice is a comprehensive, medically directed, team-oriented program that emphasizes pain control and symptom management rather than curative treatment for patients who no longer respond to routine medical care.

Palliative medicine comes from the word palliation, which means “relieving or soothing the symptoms of a disease or disorder.”

Palliative care is for people of any age, and at any stage in an illness, and may help a patient to recover from an illness by relieving symptoms such as pain, anxiety, or loss of appetite during medical treatments or procedures.

“Hospice treats the person, not the disease; focuses on the family, not the individual; and emphasizes the quality of life, not duration,” said Doug Williams, executive cirector of Golden LivingCenter-Columbus “Palliative medicine complements the hospice discipline as it allows the medical team to address physical, emotional, spiritual and social concerns that arise with advanced illness.”

“With hospice and palliative care, many times a skilled nursing facility becomes a patient’s home, and our staff and volunteers become close members of the family,” he said.

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