Searching for Freedom of Choice at the End of Life in Kentucky
Matthew L. White
Medicare offers these choices to an elderly person with a few short months to live:
- He can use the skilled nurse facility benefit and spend his last few months in a nursing home, where he will receive the nursing care that he needs 24/7.
- He can receive hospice care, which provides the pain relief, spiritual support, and palliative care that would ease him through to the end. Hospice care is also covered by Medicare, but room and board are not covered expenses, so he would have to live at home or with family.
- He can receive hospice care in a nursing home, but Medicare will cover only one or the other, so he or his family would have to pay to keep the nursing home room if Medicare pays for the hospice care.
If someone opts for hospice care, it has to be in her home or she must live with someone else. She may not have her own home, or she may not be capable of living alone. Although it may be for only a few months, family members may not be in a position to devote the time it takes to care for her. She may not even have family or close friends left living.
Individuals who choose to live out their remaining months in a nursing home—or who have no choice—may not receive the kind of gentle, caring assistance that hospices offer the dying to meet the end peacefully.
Wherever your elderly relatives live out their final days, they deserve kind, caring attention. If someone you love is a victim of Kentucky nursing home abuse, contact Gray and White Law. Call us at 502-210-8942 or toll free at 888-450-4456 to set up a FREE, no-obligation consultation.
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