Who We Are...
Willow Tree Hospice is different from other hospices.
Willow Tree Hospice was founded by a family of nurses and, today, continues under the guidance of nurses. We work diligently providing care and support for each individual's end-of-life journey. We are a small “boutique” hospice and focus our attention on each patient and family. A Registered Nurse will visit the patient, usually twice a week, to coordinate care with their personal physician to manage and treat any symptoms. A home health aide will help with personal care of the patient, typically five times a week, for an hour or two a day. A chaplain and social worker will also offer the patient and the family spiritual and emotional support. In addition, we have a cadre of volunteers who provide visits for companionship. We offer a number of complimentary therapies including Pet Therapy, Healing Touch, Massage Therapy and Music Therapy by our certified therapist. Bereavement support is offered to families for at least 13 month after their loved one has passed away.
What exactly is hospice?
Hospice is philosophy of care. The philosophy of hospice is to help people with terminal illnesses have best quality of life they can have without the trauma of aggressive treatment.
We believe that dying is a normal and natural part of living. Hospice views the whole family, the patient and his/her family, as a unit of care. The patient receives the services of a Registered Nurse as well as home health aide services, social services, chaplain services, and a variety of complementary services such as Pet Therapy and Healing Touch. Hospice service focus on comfort, pain management, and the quality of life. These services are delivered at the patient’s home - wherever the patient calls home (i.e. a private house, assisted living, nursing facility, etc…). Hospice may be the best medical experience you ever have and is ideal for people who no longer wish to go to the hospital and undergo endless testing and aggressive treatments.
Hospice care is NOT just for cancer patients. It is also available to people with heart, kidney, or lung disease, Alzheimer's, AIDS, adult failure to thrive, debility, and many other life-limiting illnesses.
What is NOT covered by hospice?
Hospice does NOT cover room and board in a nursing home or assisted living facility except under very limited circumstances. In addition, medications for illnesses not associated with the hospice diagnosis are not covered and will continue to be paid for as they were before the patient elected hospice benefits.
Is all hospice care the same?
No. Many communities have more than one hospice. Medicare requires hospices to provide a basic level of care but the quantity and quality of services can vary significantly from one hospice to another. To find the best hospice for your needs, ask your doctor, health care professional, clergy, social workers, or friends who have received care for a family member. You may want to call or meet with the hospices and ask questions about their services.
Is caring for the patient at home the only place hospice care can be delivered?
No. Hospice patients receive care in their personal residences, nursing homes, assisted living facilities, hospital hospice units, and inpatient hospice centers.
One of the first things a hospice team will do is prepare an individualized care plan that will, among other things, address the amount of care giving needed by the patient. Hospice staff visit regularly and are always accessible to answer medical questions. Hospice staff will help you determine if additional care givers are necessary.
How long can someone be on hospice?
There is no limit to how long a patient can be on hospice, as long as their condition continues to decline. If the patient's condition improves and the disease seems to be in remission, patients can be discharged from hospice and return to regular Medicare coverage until they begin to decline again, at which time they can receive hospice services again, or go on about their daily life. For a discharged patient that later needs to return to hospice care, Medicare and most private insurance will allow additional coverage for this purpose.
The patient or their health care power-of-attorney can revoke hospice services at any time
by simply signing a revocation form. The patient immediately reverts back to regular
Medicare coverage. It really is that easy.