DETROIT (November 22, 2021) – In a “My Why” video aimed at educating the public about the comfort and benefits of hospice care, three caregivers open up about their experience during their loved ones’ end-of-life journey at Henry Ford Hospice.
Michelle Ford, Eva Gomez, and Cody Murphy describe the challenge of having to say goodbye and the important role hospice played. Ford and Murphy lost their spouses and Gomez lost her mother.
Accepting that a loved one’s life is coming to an end is tough on families, said Anthony Grech, M.D., Medical Director of Henry Ford Hospice.
“Our team strives to improve the quality of life for patients and to help ease families through the painful and difficult period,” he said. “We’re about promoting dignity and affirming life.”
Educating the public about hospice remains an uphill battle as many individuals and families often avoid discussions about death and dying, Dr. Grech said. For example, Ford’s initial thoughts about hospice were that it was a “horrible place.” That changed after she met with the team which ensured her that her husband Nelson’s needs would be priority number one. “I knew it was the right decision to make,” she said. “He was comfortable and alert up until the last day when we told each other goodbye.”
In the final stages of an incurable disease or illness, hospice provides patients with pain management, symptom control and emotional support. They also help to lessen the burden placed on family while caring for their loved one. Hospice is recommended when a serious illness cannot be cured and life expectancy is six months or less.
“Family members sometime view hospice as giving up on their loved one,” Dr. Grech said. “What we do is provide a specialized level of care that allows a person to die with dignity. Our team of medical and spiritual professionals and volunteers work with families every step in the end-of-life journey.”
In the video, U.S. Marine veteran Cody Murphy described the emotion he felt when his late wife Sarah, also a U.S. Marine veteran was referred to hospice. “It was scary only because we knew she had reached the end of her treatment options,” he said. “Sarah’s nurse, who became like family, quickly put our fears to rest and helped make coping during that emotionally challenging time, more manageable.”
Gomez said she was comforted by the empathy and compassion of the team that cared for her mother, Cynthia. “They treated my mother like the lady she was, and I will never forget that,” she said.
For more information about hospice services, call 313-549-4906.
MEDIA CONTACT: Synthia Bryant / [email protected] / 248-421-8686