If someone you love is living in an aged care home and is nearing the end of their life, you can be comforted that the staff at the home will make them feel as relaxed and comfortable as they can. If you think additional care beyond what is provided at the aged care home is necessary, you can talk to the staff about purchasing staff hours.
Consult with the staff at the aged care home and come up with a plan to best meet the care needs of the person, your family and other carers. A good care plan should outline the following,
• Management of pain and other symptoms a person in aged care is experiencing.
• How spiritual and emotional encouragement can be provided.
• Outline clearly how cultural support can be availed to the person.
• Assist family members in making decisions about care alternatives.
• Prepare all those who are involved so that they can know what to expect.
• Outline how bereaved carers and family will be provided with support.
Will The Person Need To Move Out Of The Aged Care Home?
If your loved one nearing the end of life is in an aged care home where their needs are not provided for, they will need to move out. A resident agreement should indicate whether the home will be able to provide care as the person nears their end of life.
Whether the person at the aged care home will opt to go for treatment at a hospital is a decision to be taken by close family members and the patient's doctor. If the person goes to a hospital, their place at the aged care home should be reserved for them.
If your loved one feels more comfortable spending their final days at home, they should be allowed to leave aged care. Care at the last stages of life can be provided at home.
This is the care provided for a person with an illness that is so advanced that there is no hope of them getting cured. Palliative care can be accorded in an aged care home, with the aim of achieving the highest possible quality of life for the person and their loved ones.
As a carer of a person nearing their end of life, you know the person intimately and their wishes. You can work with staff at the home to make your loved one as comfortable as possible. As well, your actions and presence can provide physical and emotional support for your loved one who is at the end of their life.