Comfort Care

The staff at Hoag understand that this may be a difficult time for you and your family. Realizing this, and anticipating the anxiety and fear you may experience while caring for your loved one, we have provided information to help you understand and respond to the symptoms indicative of impending death.

The end of life process is unique to each person. We encourage you to use the guidelines on the End of Life web pages to understand this process, and realize that not all of these described symptoms will appear at the same time, and some may never appear. These symptoms are merely the natural progression of the body as it prepares for the final stage of life. For some individuals, this process could take months, for others, hours or days. The hospital staff is here to answer questions, provide support and assist you in any way possible. You and your family are encouraged to utilize the support services provided by Hoag.

If your loved one has an Advance Health Care Directive (AHCD) or Physician Order for Life Sustaining Treatment (POLST), please provide a copy to the medical staff. An AHCD designates a decision maker if your loved one is incapable of understanding a proposed treatment or becomes unable to communicate their wishes regarding care. Hospital staff and practitioners who provide care in the hospital shall comply with these directives. All patient’s rights apply to the person who has legal responsibility to make decisions regarding medical care on your behalf. If an AHCD is not available, and your loved one wants life-sustaining procedures to be withheld, the physician can write an order reflecting your loved one’s wishes.

Remember to pay attention to your own needs during this difficult time. Get plenty of rest, eat a well-balanced diet and exercise. Be aware of symptoms of stress and fatigue, such as headaches, nausea, heartburn or shortness of breath.

Please feel free to contact Hoag Palliative Care Program at 949-764-8585 and Hoag Spiritual Care at 949-764-8358 for emotional and spiritual support. We are available to help you during this time of uncertainty.

To learn more, download a brochure on comfort, care and support for end of life.