Disclaimer: The following resources are not affiliated with or endorsed by The Hospice of San Diego.
- Hospice and other related information
- Specific Disease Information
- Advance Directives
- Caregiver Resources
- Final Arrangements
- Financial Assistance and Insurance
- Resources for Military
- Grief Support
- Emergency Preparedness
- Current Events
Hospice and other related information
Comprehensive information and resources about hospice care:
- National Hospice and Palliative Care Organization (NHPCO) to help people make decisions about end-of-life care and services before a crisis: https://www.nhpco.org/patients-and-caregivers/
- California Hospice and Palliative Care Association (CHAPCA) https://calhospice.org/hospice/
Article on Medicare’s Hospice Benefit
Specific Disease Information
Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis (ALS) or Lou Gehrig’s Disease
The ALS Association is a national nonprofit organization that provides assistance to people with ALS through their local chapters: https://www.als.org/. The ALS Association has excellent information on when to consider hospice and what to expect from hospice: https://www.als.org/navigating-als/resources/fyi-hospice.
The San Diego Chapter of The ALS Association provides information and resources to individuals with ALS in San Diego: http://webgsd.alsa.org/site/PageNavigator/GSD_8c_Resources.html
According to the Alzheimer’s Association, “Alzheimer’s disease is a degenerative brain disease and the most common form of dementia. Dementia is not a specific disease. It’s an overall term that describes a group of symptoms.” The Alzheimer’s Association website includes a wealth of information including the signs of Alzheimer’s disease, local resources, treatments, and help and support: https://www.alz.org/.
This article discusses Alzheimer’s and gum disease: https://www.newmouth.com/blog/alzheimers-gum-disease/.
Pleural mesothelioma is a deadly form of cancer caused from asbestos exposure. Due to the long latency period of mesothelioma, approximately 20-50 years, about 80% of those who are diagnosed with this terrible disease are seniors. The Pleural Mesothelioma Center helps seniors and their families find free care and support to make their journey much more manageable: https://www.pleuralmesothelioma.com/cancer/
Mesothelioma Hope offers free resources that are reviewed by certified oncologists and provide detailed information about mesothelioma and its health impacts. Their mission is to raise awareness about cancer and other asbestos-related diseases such as mesothelioma.
Mesothelioma hospice care is a support for people with end-stage mesothelioma. This cancer has a short life expectancy, and many patients and families can benefit from compassionate, comfort focused care. https://www.mesotheliomaguide.com/mesothelioma/
Grief Support for Cancer Victims: https://mesothelioma.net/mesothelioma-and-mourning/
The California Advance Directives form allows you to make your wishes known about how you want to be treated if you get very sick – including choosing an agent to make healthcare decisions for you when you cannot make them yourself. This form should be used by anyone in California, not just seniors or those with terminal illnesses. https://oag.ca.gov/sites/all/files/agweb/pdfs/consumers/ProbateCodeAdvancedHealthCareDirectiveForm-fillable.pdf
An important consideration for seniors and those with life-limiting illnesses is whether to opt for CPR if they stop breathing.
- Article discussing the reality of CPR, which is very different from what is shown in popular media: https://dailycaring.com/the-reality-of-cpr-for-seniors-get-the-facts/
- Article discussing survival rates and outcomes for elderly patients who receive CPR: https://www.reuters.com/article/us-cpr-survival-elderly/for-elderly-hospital-patients-cpr-often-has-poor-outcome-study-idUSKBN0DP1IH20140509
Caring for a loved one is hard work and can be very overwhelming. These websites offer a wealth of information on a variety of topics:
- Practical care strategies, stress relief, community resources, how to handle family issues, and hands-on care: https://www.caregiver.org/caregiving-issues-and-strategies
- Music is a powerful tool for caregivers and patients alike:
- Caregiver statistics: https://www.caregiver.org/caregiver-statistics-health-technology-and-caregiving-resources
- Sensory stimulation for Alzheimer’s patients: https://www.alzheimers.net/2014-01-23/sensory-stimulation-alzheimers-patients/
- Information on the importance of sleep for persons with dementia and tips/strategies for good “sleep hygiene”: https://www.sleephealthfoundation.org.au/pdfs/Dementia-and-Sleep.pdf
- Community guide that helps navigate financial options for senior care: https://www.payingforseniorcare.com/paying-for-assisted-living
- Open Caregiving’s mission is to support caregivers and the people they care for. We build technology-enabled products to help caregivers, empower them to advocate for care recipients, and improve access to quality care. Some examples include:
- Overview of vaccine FAQ answers: COVID-19 Vaccines: A Guide for Individuals
- It’s important for all of us to try to stay active for the sake of our physical and mental health, even if we’re still homebound. The ideas and resources in this article offer great suggestions for seniors of all ages and abilities: Staying Fit While Staying Home: Exercise for Seniors in Quarantine
- During and after a crisis, it’s more important than ever to take care of mental health concerns, especially considering how much our emotional health may be impacted in such strange times. This guide will help seniors and others cope with stress, grief, and more during this pandemic: Mental Health and Coping during the Coronavirus (COVID-19) Pandemic
- Social isolation is a bigger concern for home-based seniors than ever. These great tips offer ideas on how older adults who are still socially distant from their loved ones can stay connected: Socializing in Place: Tips for Older People to Stay Connected and Safe
There may come a time when you or your loved one can no longer remain safely at home. Choosing placement is an important decision and can be difficult to navigate.
- Tips on how to choose a residential care facility: https://www.aplaceformom.com/planning-and-advice/articles/how-to-choose-residential-care-facility
- Advice for family caregivers: https://www.caring.com/
- Fact sheets about nursing homes and residential care facilities for the elderly (RCFE) from the California Advocates for Nursing Home Reform: http://www.canhr.org/factsheets/
- Guide to senior communities and care providers: https://www.newlifestyles.com/
50,000+ searchable senior living facilities across every city, town, and county in the United States. Resources and articles on senior living, aging, dementia, senior care, caregiving, and more: https://www.seniorguidance.org/
- Offering eco-friendly deathcare options for all of Southern California such as Water Cremation and Green Burial: http://www.whiteroseaquacremation.com
- Body donation programs often offer cremation and return of ashes at no cost to the family. These arrangements need to be made in advance.
- Information on organ and body donation: https://www.mainlinehealth.org/blog/whole-body-donation
- Whole body donation for research and medical education:
Financial Assistance and Insurance
- In Home Support Services (IHSS) is a statewide program that provides those with limited income who are disabled, blind, or over the age of 65 with in-home care services to help them remain safely at home. IHSS can provide homemaker and personal care assistance to eligible individuals who are receiving SSI or who have a low income.
- Information about the state’s IHSS program: http://www.canhr.org/factsheets/misc_fs/html/fs_ihss.htm
- Information about IHSS in San Diego County: https://www.sandiegocounty.gov/content/sdc/hhsa/programs/ais/inhome_supportive_services.html
- Medi-Cal program: https://www.sandiegocounty.gov/hhsa/programs/ssp/medi-cal_program/index.html
- Medicare hospice coverage: https://www.medicare.gov/coverage/hospice-care
- This guide from the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau offers an overview of assistance options for seniors and links on topics like financial planning and fraud prevention: Financial help for older adults
- Many seniors are looking into reverse mortgages to help them free up funds for living expenses or healthcare costs, but it’s important to know what they involve so you can decide if they’re right for you. This tool explains in detail what a reverse mortgage is and helps you calculate what yours could be: Reverse Mortgage Calculator
- Guide to pretecting elderly individuals from scammers
Resources for Military
- Home and community-based care for veterans: https://www.sandiego.va.gov/services/Home_and_Community_Based_Care.asp
- Support services provided to current and former service members and their family members: https://www.courage2call.org
- According to the United States Small Business Association (SBA), nearly one in 10 U.S. businesses are run by veterans. They cover various business types, from professional and technical services to consulting, construction, consumer products, and more. This guide outlines the necessary steps to take to get a successful company off the ground and turn an idea into a successful business. How to Start a Small Business - A Veteran’s SMB Guide with Tools and Financial Resources
- Free Grants for Veterans helps low income veterans with finding financial assistance programs. Their directory lists assistance programs that help with utility, energy, mortgage, rent, and medical bills. http://freegrantsforveterans.org
- Grief Support Groups in San Diego County: https://www.psychologytoday.com/us/groups/grief/ca/san-diego
- Grief recovery support groups in the city of San Diego, CA: https://www.griefshare.org/countries/us/states/ca/cities/san_diego
- Information about Camp Erin, a weekend-long camp for grieving children and teens: https://www.ourhouse-grief.org/camp-erin-la-oc/
- Natural disasters such as wildfires are common, and you should be prepared before they happen: https://www.readysandiego.org/content/dam/oesready/en/Resources/OES%20My%20Disaster%20Plan_ENGLISH.pdf
- Register your cell phone and email address with the County so that you can receive reverse-911 calls: https://www.readysandiego.org/content/oesready/en-us/alertsandiego.html
- Recovery resources for after a disaster: http://www.theredguidetorecovery.com/the-red-guide-to-recovery-condensed-version/
- The Hospice of San Diego recently partnered with ABC10 to do a video series on San Diego Connect
- How Can Hospice Help You?
- Misconceptions About Hospice
- The Pandemic’s Effects on the Senior Community