A recent TED talk by–Peter Saul “Let’s Talk about Dying” states:
There are four ways most of us will die:
- Sudden Death- this has become very rare.
- Terminal Illness- becoming more unlikely to happen. Only one in 10 people who are over 80 will die of cancer.
- Chronic Illness = Organ Failure- becoming more likely. The increasing failure of respiratory, cardiac, renal or a vital organ, with hospital admissions and aggressive treatments, until at some point, somebody says, enough is enough, and we stop.
- Frailty and Old Age- most likely to happen. At least 6 out of 10 of us will die in this form. Unfortunately, the last year of life can be spent with a great deal of disability or in the hospital.
Fact, 75% of us, will die in the hospital or intensive care. In the U.S. that is 3 in 4.
- Individuals indicated they would want to talk with their doctor about the hospice care option if they knew or understood that their illness was serious or life-limiting. Ironically, healthcare professionals believe that the most significant barriers to the use of hospice by their patients are patient/family denial or lack of acceptance of the serious nature of their illness. (Barry Baines, MD, Lake Superior Quality Innovation Network)
Often the disease process is so acute; we make several trips to the emergency room and the hospital. With hospice, the staff are managing symptoms and pain. Patients can call 24/7 rather than the medics when they are in pain or distress. That means fewer trips to the hospital and a lot fewer medical procedures when facing a life-threatening illness. To learn more about Hospice Care, click here, to schedule a complimentary consultation.