On this page, you'll find answers to the most frequently asked questions about Crystal Coast Hospice House, the organization, and SECU Crystal Coast Hospice House, the facility. If your question is not addressed here, please feel free to contact us.

Click on a question below to reveal the answer.

What is Hospice?

Hospice, by definition, is a team-oriented approach to providing specialized care for people facing a life-limiting illness or injury. It includes expert medical care, pain management, and emotional support for patients and their families. But more simply, hospice care supports living one’s life to the fullest with dignity regardless of how much time remains. National Hospice and Palliative Care Organization, 2014, https://www.nhpco.org.

Hospice becomes appropriate when it is determined that further efforts for cure are no longer feasible or desirable. Hospice will do everything possible to help the patient live peacefully until death.

Who is “Eligible” for Hospice care?

Hospice care is for people who have chosen comfort-oriented care over the pursuit of further curative or experimental treatment. Anyone who is diagnosed with a terminal illness, and whose life is most likely measured in months rather than years, may select hospice care.

When is it time for Hospice?

Our hospice staff is trained to offer peace of mind in addition to medical care. We hear it so many times, patients and families tell us: “We wish we’d called hospice sooner.” Patients and families can benefit most from hospice care when they seek support earlier rather than in a crisis.

“When is the right time?” A growing number of caregivers are finding that the correct answer to the question is, “As early as possible,” as they discover all the advantages hospice has to offer the patient as well as the caregiver.

What is a Hospice House and how is it different from a nursing home?

The SECU Crystal Coast Hospice House is a specialized care home for hospice patients who need temporary or short term care when they can no longer remain in their own home, or are released from the hospital and cannot return home right away, or when the care they need can no longer be provided at home. The SECU Crystal Coast Hospice House is a facility with a home-like setting, which allows the patient and family to “feel” at home. Visitation by loved ones is encouraged and permitted around the clock, 7 days a week, including children and on occasions, pets. Family and loved ones find that the SECU Crystal Coast Hospice House is there for them as much as it is there for our patients.

How does Hospice work with my doctor?

The hospice team works directly with the patient’s doctor to provide optimum medical care. Often times your physician is the first to mention the possibility of hospice care. Some physicians hesitate to bring up hospice because they sincerely want to preserve hope for a cure. Frequently, they will continue to pursue treatment because they think that’s what the patient and family want. When a doctor does mention hospice care, he or she is simply presenting an option for comfort, which in many cases may actually lengthen life by increasing the quality of the time remaining. It is important that you and your doctor talk openly and share the same goals for maintaining quality of life.

Who chooses your Hospice care?

YOU DO! According to Medicare and Medicaid a patient is free to choose any qualified agency offering him or her services. SECU Crystal Coast Hospice House provides care for our five-county service area, including Carteret, Craven, Jones, Onslow, and Pamlico Counties. However, patients and their families are welcome from anywhere.

How is Hospice paid for?

Hospice services are paid through Medicare, Medicaid, most insurance plans, and personal payments. Through generous donations from the community, Crystal Coast Hospice House and our healthcare partner, 3HC, are able to continue the mission of caring for all who need us regardless of their ability to pay.

What types of illnesses can Hospice care benefit?

Hospice care is beneficial for people of any age with any terminal illness. Many people mistakenly think that hospice care is only for cancer patients. Some other leading causes of death are lung, heart and kidney diseases, Alzheimer’s, other types of dementias, stroke, neuromuscular diseases, and many other illnesses, as well as natural decline, all of which can be helped by the comfort and support of hospice care.

How is pain managed in Hospice care?

Pain is often one of the most feared issues. Pain management is one of the most important services provided by Hospice. It is a priority!

Pain, as well as other symptoms, is managed as efficiently as possible. The care team, consisting of physician, nurse practitioner, nurses, social worker, and chaplain, meet regularly to discuss the patient’s needs and to tailor each patient’s care to best manage their symptoms and meet their needs.

What if I improve or wish to pursue curative treatment?

You, the patient, are always in charge of your healthcare decision. If your condition improves and the disease seems to be in remission, or if you reconsider your decision to pursue curative treatment, you can be discharged from hospice care. If hospice care is needed again, re-enrollment is always available.

What are some of the signs that your family could benefit from Hospice?

Caring for yourself as your loved one’s caregiver is one of the most important things you can do. SECU Crystal Coast Hospice House supports the family in conjunction with the patient.

How do you know if you or your caregivers could benefit from hospice care?

• You or your caregivers are physically and/or emotionally exhausted from caring for you or your loved one.
• Your family is feeling isolated because of caregiving demands or the uncertainties you feel about your loved one’s future.
• You or members of your family appear to need emotional support to cope with the situation.
• You are overwhelmed by the physical, financial, emotional and spiritual concerns arising because of the illness.

What if temporary help is needed?

Sometimes caregivers need time to care for themselves. Sometimes caregivers need to be away for brief periods of time. SECU Crystal Coast Hospice House can provide temporary respite care for individuals and provide relief and support for the caregiver.

How are patients and families supported?

Each patient’s care is tailored to their specific needs by a team of Hospice professionals. Each member of this Hospice interdisciplinary team has a specific area of expertise within their scope of practice. The team, however, is responsible for providing overall Hospice care with a holistic approach.

• The Hospice Medical Director and Attending Physician focus on the medical aspects of the terminal disease.
• the Hospice Nurse provides personal care, focusing on the physical symptoms and medical complications of the terminal disease. All nursing care is provided by, or under the supervision of, a registered nurse.
• The Hospice Medical Social Worker focuses on the emotional and psychosocial needs of the patient and family, and provides supportive care through counseling and coordinating of community services as needed.
• The Chaplain provides spiritual support and counseling to the patient and family.
• Hospice Volunteers assist the patient and family in any one of a multitude of ways, including providing comfort and respite to the family, an avenue of socialization for the patient, etc. All volunteers have completed 3HC’s volunteer training course.
• Bereavement Services are provided to the family for up to one year following the patient’s death.

How do I begin the process of Hospice care at SECU Crystal Coast Hospice House?

Call the Intake Line for our operating partner, 3HC, at 800.692.4442. Our trained and compassionate staff will guide you through the process and answer all your questions.

Feel free to come by our beautiful campus and tour our facility at any time. We will take time to show you around the House, introduce you to our staff, and answer your questions.

We know that this can be a stressful time. We want to help relieve your stress and answer all your questions so that you can make the best and most informed decision for your health care or the care of your loved one. We look forward to meeting you soon.