Caring for a Loved One with an Advanced Illness

Nurse explaining information to patient in hospital

Caring for someone suffering from a chronic or advanced illness can be very difficult. 

Suddenly you become inundated with information and instructions. Everyone has a different opinion, but no one has the answer you want to hear. We understand. 

MJHS Hospice is dedicated to guiding you through this process on your terms. The resources in this section are a compilation of questions frequently asked by caregivers. We hope that we can be a source of support and clarity during this challenging time.  

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Resources

A child rests their head on their mother's shoulder; the mother looks down at the child and smiles

Learn More About Hospice Care - Article

Understanding Pediatric Hospice

Understanding Pediatric Hospice Can Be Confusing. We want to make it a bit easier by explaining what it is so you can understand what this kind of care includes and how it may benefit you and your ill child.

Young Woman Hugging Senior Woman

Learn More About Hospice Care - Article

Top 5 Myths About Hospice Care

Hospice care is for patients with a condition that gives them less than six months to live. Read the top 5 myths people have about the treatment option.

Young woman in bed suffering from cancer

Learn More About Hospice Care - Article

The Difference Between Hospice and Palliative Care

We want the best for our loved ones. This is why knowing the difference between palliative and hospice care and understanding which meets your loved one’s preferences is useful. While there are many misconceptions, neither palliative nor hospice care necessarily prolongs life, nor do they hasten death. So, what is the difference between the two?

Man Kissing Father's Head

Learn More About Hospice Care - Article

Is Hospice Care Right for Your Loved One with Dementia?

Hospice care is an excellent way to ensure someone with advanced dementia receives the comforting, specialized care they need. This article will help you understand your hospice care options. We aim to offer you the support you need while navigating this next stage in the care of your loved one.

Hospice Care Home Visit

Learn More About Hospice Care - Article

Does Medicare Cover Hospice Care?

Does Medicare cover hospice care? It seems like a straightforward question. Unfortunately, many family members discover that it’s challenging to find a simple answer when they start researching the Medicare benefits their loved ones are entitled to. We hope we can help.

Two Senior Women Comforting Each Other

Helpful Advice & Information - Article

What to Say to a Loved One Who is Dying

Hospice care can be an uncomfortable topic for many families. Find ways to ease the conversation with your loved ones today.

Father describing pain to his son

Helpful Advice & Information - Article

Helpful Tips for Describing Pain

Pain is very subjective, and it is essential to recognize that no two people experience pain in the same way. This article will provide helpful tips on getting a loved one to describe their level of pain.

Nurse checking heartbeat of elderly patient

Chronic or Advanced Illnesses - Article

Congestive Heart Failure (CHF) and You

Congestive Heart Failure (CHF), also known as Heart Failure, is when your heart gets damaged and is not pumping enough blood to meet your body's needs. Learn more.

Two Senior Men Sitting on Outdoor Steps

Chronic or Advanced Illnesses - Article

Warning Signs of Dementia

Dementia can be a scary word. Learn about the early warning signs and what to do if you're noticing symptoms.

Mother and daughter reviewing photo album together

Helpful Advice & Information - Article

9 Tips for Visiting Someone in Hospice

There are things you can do to bring comfort and joy to a person in hospice. We pulled together the following tips from the hospice nurses, social workers, and clergy at MJHS Health System.

Votive candles

Hospice and Judaism - Article

End-of-Life Care in the Bible

The Torah is called Etz Chayim, a tree of life, because it provides values, ethics, and laws by which Jews are commanded to live. But how we die is also part of how we live. Below are some key examples from the Torah and what they teach us about dying.

Jewish Guy

Hospice and Judaism - Article

Why Jews Need to Talk About Death

Whether your reticence comes from anxiety, religious superstition, or fear of engaging with a morbid subject, experts advise everyone to consider these issues earlier rather than later. Some rabbis even encourage newly engaged couples to discuss advance care planning before their wedding and to revisit the topic when a child is born or around other lifecycle events. Read some tips on how to get this conversation going with your family members.

Elderly couple reminiscing

Planning in Advance - Article

How to Talk to Loved Ones About Your End-of-Life Wishes

Conversations about end-of-life decisions are delicate, personal, and unique — and rarely, if ever, begun and completed in one sitting. One thing is sure, given the mobility of our society, the advances in medical technology, and the continuing cultural denial of death: The need for these conversations has never been more profound.

Will being stamped

Hospice and Judaism - Article

Jewish Ethical Wills (Tzava’ot)

Traditionally, Jewish ethical wills contained several items, including burial instructions, debts and obligations to be paid, requests that family members carry on specific religious traditions, and blessings over the family. But modern ethical wills are less about accounting and instruction and more about imparting wisdom or wishes or simply reviewing one’s life.

Will being written

Planning in Advance - Article

Writing an Ethical Will: How to Get Started

Writing an ethical will can feel like an overwhelming process. How does one begin to summarize a lifetime of lessons and beliefs? Where should the focus of the message be? In this article you will find helpful exercise to help you on this journey.

Elderly jewish man

Hospice and Judaism - Article

Jewish Perspectives on End-of-Life Care

Decisions concerning medical care in the final stages of life present a range of Jewish ethical and legal problems. While Jewish tradition maintains that human life is of infinite value and that its preservation overrides every other religious imperative, relieving pain and allowing for the soul’s peaceful departure are also well-established values. Learn More.

Hospice and Judaism - Article

Judaism, Hospice and Palliative Care: Questions and Answers

Patients are typically referred to hospice care when further medical treatment is not likely to reverse the course of their disease. The decision to choose hospice care is a personal one, as is the amount in which Jewish tradition informs one’s choices for end-of-life care. The following is a general overview of contemporary Jewish perspectives on the topic.

Learn More About Hospice Care - Article

Must-Know Words and Phrases Related to End-of-Life Care

Navigating any stressful and significant situation requires effective communication and clear understanding. To help you better understand the various issues that may arise, both in a general and Jewish context, the list below explains the terms you are likely to encounter.

Nurse in Jeans Taking Notes During Home Visit with Middle Aged Couple

Planning in Advance - Article

What is a Health Care Proxy?

A Health Care Proxy allows you to appoint someone you trust, like a family member or close friend, to make health care decisions for you if you lose the ability to make them yourself. Learn more.

Caregiver And Loved One Looking at Laptop

Planning in Advance - Article

Advance Directives: What They Are and How To Make Them

Advance Directives ensure that your wishes about treatment will be followed if you cannot decide for yourself. Read about some of the most used advance directives.

Patient being guided through music therapy

Supportive Care at the End of Life - Article

The Role of Art & Music for Patients with Dementia and their Families

Visual art, music, and literature make the world we live in worthwhile. Enjoying the Arts enriches people's lives with dementia and gives them a creative outlet to express their emotions. Learn about the Role of Music and Art Therapy doe people with dementia.

Veteran Taking Part in Ceremony

Supportive Care at the End of Life - Article

Meeting Veterans Special Needs at the End of Life

Veterans deserve end-of-life support from a care team that knows how to support, uplift, and addresses their unique and unspoken needs. Unfortunately, the strength that served them so well when on active duty often prevents veterans from asking for help. Learn about how MJHS Hospice goes the extra mile for veterans in our program.