While you might hear about hospice care, many don’t necessarily understand what hospice care entails until having a loved one who is in need of care. And with the number of hospice providers available (and rising), knowing how to find a provider that is the best fit can be difficult. To help, WZZM 13 sat down with Ben Jacobs, Team Manager at Faith Hospice to explain what exactly hospice care is, how care is delivered, and tips for finding the right provider.
To start, Jacobs answers the question, “What is hospice care?” explaining hospice is a type of palliative care—an area of medicine focused on managing symptoms of a disease process. In the instance of hospice, this disease process is a terminal illness in a patient with 6 months or less to live. Jacobs continues, breaking down how hospice can step in to offer services many people don’t realize hospice provides. Not only is there an interdisciplinary team of physicians, nurses, social workers, chaplains, and aides but he adds, “It [hospice] is a unique form of medical care because it's not just for the patient but for the family members and loved ones as well.”


“Hospice is a unique form of medical care because it is not only for the patient but for the family as well.”

When it comes to finding a hospice care provider that is the best fit for your loved one, it can be difficult given the number of providers available—in West Michigan alone there’s a dozen or more to choose from. So what do you need to be looking for to help sift through the options?
Ben Jacobs notes how longevity of the organization should play a role as well as an emphasis on quality of care. Faith Hospice has been serving patients and their families in West Michigan for nearly 30 years and he describes how there’s a lot of comfort that is brought to a patient and their family with that level of experience and specialty. “When you sign up for hospice, you’re working with a team that not only specializes in that type of care but a team that has been through that journey many times before.”
You can watch the full interview with Ben Jacobs and WZZM 13 here.