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Answers for your questions about death and dying

from 1934 hospice, nursing, and geriatric care professionals

Caregivers Managing Death and Dying of a Loved One

     In the final stages of a person's life, life-sustaining systems begin to shut down. The physical, mental, emotional and spiritual changes experienced by an elder may occur over either months, weeks, days or even hours.
     And while each person's experience is unique, there are some general ground rules for what the dying process, whether in hospice, hospital or home, may look like.
     This MyAgingFolks.com support page intends to help those who are the dying, and their loved ones, to understand and be prepared for these changes. With an understanding of the dying process, a caregiver can attempt to better provide appropriate support and comfort for their an ailing loved one.
     The general experience includes any of the following: physical weakness, loss of interest in everyday matters, withdrawal from family and friends, increased sleepiness, loss of appetite, confusion, restlessness, body temperature decrease, and turning of the skin color towards a grayer, duller tone. You can further explore the information links we have provided to get a bigger-picture perspective on the process of death.
     Feel free to reach out to the nurses, geriatricians, social workers and other expert eldercare professionals at MyAgingFolks.com for help and support during the last days of an elder person's life.

Expert Answers to Death, Dying, and Hospice Q's

My Grandaughter was in a horrific car accident last July 2012. She needs a health proxy, what do I have to do to get it? her mother never took care of her, and right now my grand daughter can not talk. Please help me. How can i get a health proxy for my g ... See All Answers
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Lawrence C. , Elder Law Attorney answers:
Your granddaughter need not be able to speak in order to communicate. You should communicate with her in writing. She can provide a healthcare proxy or advanced medical directive to you or someone else after having an opportunity to review the document a ...

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I had been told that a living will expires seven years after being formulated. Does a living will need to be redrawn every seven years? Do they expire? ... See All Answers
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Jay F. , Elder Law Attorney answers:
No ...

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My dad is is in a nursing home in New Rochelle NY, while trying to get paper work in order, the social worker at the home requested that we fill out a Surrogate form, pior to filling out the power of attorney form. Where would this form be found? What do ... See All Answers
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Peter S. , Elder Law Attorney answers:
I think the social worker is mistaken. I know of no Surrogate 's Court form like that she suggests. The Surrogate' s Court handles estates of deceased persons; nothing to do with signing a power of attorney. ...

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My Father was recently admitted and is in ICU. The hospital is saying that if his breathing gets worse they will have to intubate him. He has a living will that states he does not want intubation.
The ICU claims they will sedate him and intubate ... See All Answers
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Henry C. , Elder Law Attorney answers:
Many hospitals have a standard form (called a POLST Form) which they require to implement a Living Will. This document is kept with the patient file. It usually is just the procedure they require to implement the intent of the Living Will. Therefore, ...

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My partner is in home hospice. How do I let my partner be in hospice without eating or drinking? Her refusal to eat or drink is making me uncomfortable and I feel that I am helping her suffer more.
It seems she should be able to take in fluids foo ... See All Answers
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Wow, this is a very heartbreaking situation for caregivers of persons nearing end of life. It may seem strange but at this stage of life your presence is their greatest need. Refusing food & water is their body's way of saying they don't need food or wate ...

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My mother is 91 years old. She has an Excellus PPO plan. Will her medicare or plan cover hospice care? Thank you. ... See All Answers
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Ronald F. , Elder Law Attorney answers:
Generally, hospice is covered by Medicare. You should confirm that with the hospice provider or contact Medicare Rights Center. However, you should know that if hospice is provided in a nursing facility the room and board of the nursing facility is not l ...

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My Dad has a Health Care Proxy in the state of Massachusetts. Is that document good in Connecticut? Do we need to get another one? ... See All Answers
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Deborah H. , Elder Law Attorney answers:
As long as the document is executed with the required formalities under Massachusetts law, it is legal and is able to be used in Connecticut. ...

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