May 18, 2021
As Parkinson’s disease (PD) progresses into its advanced stages, symptoms can become increasingly difficult to manage. At some point, the person with PD and care partners may consider hospice services, which can optimize the quality of life for the person and the family. Whether the person resides at home, in an assisted living facility, or in a nursing home, hospice can come to them. Hospice is really part of palliative care, which aims to relieve the burden of a disease not only near the end of life but all along its course. Both the terms “palliative care” and “hospice” are often misunderstood, and certain myths surround them.
This podcast is the first of a two-part series on hospice and palliative care. In this first episode, Jessica Shurer, MSW, LCSW, Clinical Social Worker and Center Coordinator of the Movement Disorders Center at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, a Parkinson’s Foundation Center of Excellence, helps to dispel some of the misunderstanding about hospice. She describes what hospice is, how it operates, and when and how to consider it. Moreover, she highlights the medical, psychological, and logistical benefits it can bring to the person with PD and to care partners.