Archive for Constipation

What About the Other C in Hospice Care?


When grieving a loved one, we may bottle up our angry-awful-anguished emotions . . .

When sharing about a new hospice patient, the nurse said, “Constipation and spiritual distress.”

And that was it!

Once a week, in the first hours of a work morning, a hospice team (chaplains, doctors, nurses, social workers, volunteer coordinators, and bereavement) gathers to review the patients. We’ll remember those who have recently died, discuss the current and ongoing patients, and take the first official “team notes” about the patients who have just entered into our care.

In most weekly meetings, there are several patients with sparse information because they were admitted in the prior twenty-four hours. There will only be the initial remarks from an intake nurse. However, if a patient had started with us several days before the meeting, the case manager nurse (and often the social worker) has had an opportunity to visit the home or care facility. More has been learned and discerned, and therefore more can be reported about the patient. The information will be listed in the medical chart, coupled with details for managing each plan of care. Pain will be reduced. Breathing will be improved. Potentially unnecessary medications will be evaluated and may be discontinued. Read More →

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