How We Can Help
Hospice Medication Information Treatment Information
At the beginning of hospice care, our staff guides you through a program called Hospice 101. This course offers complete instruction on how to provide care at home. Part of this educational service is information about medicines that ease your loved one’s pain and discomfort. You also receive ongoing education so you are always informed about medicines and their effects.
The hospice pharmacy can supply you with facts and information about medicines. Your hospice nurse is also available to help you learn about medicines available to your loved one. Below are some questions to ask so you can gather the information you need:
- What medicines are available to reduce particular symptoms?
- What is each medicine prescribed for?
- How can we tell whether medicines are working?
- Are there any dangers associated with each medicine?
Your hospice nurse can call on a nurse practitioner if necessary. Nurse practitioners provide advanced levels of care and respond to your loved one’s changing needs. They work closely with your physician to prescribe new medicines or different doses of existing medicines. Your nurse practitioner explains medicine changes and how they will affect your family member so you know what to expect.
These are some medicines we commonly prescribe for hospice patients:
- Pain medicines. We offer advanced pain relief by using a wide variety of pain medicines. Pain medicines can have a variety of side effects, so we work with you to find the medicine and dosage that works best for you.
- Stool softeners and laxatives. Some pain medicines cause constipation. We counteract this uncomfortable side effect with appropriate doses of laxatives and stool softeners.
- Anxiety reducers. Some people experience fear and emotional stress as they face the end of life. We help calm these responses with medicines that reduce anxiety and agitation. This treatment allows your loved one to better enjoy their time as well as work through emotional challenges.
- Steroids and nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs). Some disease processes cause inflammation that may result in pain and discomfort. Anti-inflammatory medicines reduce your loved one’s discomfort.
- Anti-nausea medicine. Nausea and vomiting disrupt daily activities and decrease quality of life. Anti-nausea medicine reduces these symptoms so your loved one can better participate in daily life.
As needed, we also offer in-service programs and informal education for caregivers in long-term care and other facilities. These programs helps physicians, nurses and other staff understand the goals of hospice and the medicine we commonly use with patients. With this information, non-hospice care providers are better able to work effectively with you and our staff to keep your loved one comfortable.
Hospice Medication Information Locations & Physicians
For more information, please contact us at 866.272.5083.
Find a Specialist
Enter a Zip Code to find a specialist at IU Health.
Hospice Medication Information Support Services
Find out more about medicines commonly used in hospice care to relieve pain and manage symptoms and side effects.
A Sampling of Hospice Medication Information Support Services
American Hospice Foundation
This page offers extensive information about pain medicines and their effects.
National Hospice and Palliative Care Organization
This advocacy organization hosts comprehensive education about hospice and access to hospice care resources.
Hospice Foundation of America
The Foundation of America includes extensive information about hospice as well as links to hospice resources and support.
Information about hospice care, plus extensive resources to aid caregiving for a person with a long-term or life-limiting illness are available on this website.
Indiana Association for Home and Hospice Care
This website features information on Indiana hospice services as well as education for caregivers.
American Cancer Society
The American Cancer Society offers education on hospice care for patients with cancer on their website.
American Heart Association
Learn about hospice care for patients with heart-related conditions on the American Heart Association website.
Little Red Door Cancer Agency
Little Red Door provides extra support to patients with cancer through many programs and resources.