Through my years as a hospice volunteer I have learned the depth of what we do. One thing we don’t do is give the person on hospice a few as...

Someone Call the Police

women in crowd

Through my years as a hospice volunteer I have learned the depth of what we do. One thing we don’t do is give the person on hospice a few aspirin and tell them to get some rest. We comfort them at every level of their being: spiritual, emotional and physical. In addition, we comfort their family. Not only that, we maintain contact with the family for over a year after the passing. I truly marvel at the compassion of all of our staff.


Yet, those who have no experience with hospice continue believing the myth of how depressing it must be. Even now, I am asked how I could be involved with such a sad thing. My purpose in writing about hospice is to address all of the hospice myths head-on.

Besides thinking it is sad, one of the most frequent comments I hear from people is the myth that hospice kills people. Their reasoning being that when someone signs onto hospice they seem to die fairly quickly, often within hours. Sometimes the person passes while the family is signing their loved one onto care. Even in that scenario, the family is grateful for what we did for them in their moment of crisis. To be blunt, we don’t have time to do anything to a person in that short span.

It is the disease that truly takes the life ie; “kills” the person, not hospice. There are three questions that I might ask you to consider when someone mentions they think we kill people. The first is how are we financially compensated if they pass so quickly? The second is why would we have so many people on staff? What in the world do all of them do? The third question is why hasn’t anyone called the police?

The hospice philosophy of care provides comfort in those moments of crisis at the end of life. It is helpful care guiding patients and families. If you call someone, make it a call to hospice and bust the myth.