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For info: 203-689-7004

FAQ

End of Life Guidance and Education

Q: What is a Doula?
A. Most associated with birth, the word “doula” is a Greek word meaning a non-medical person who gives physical, emotional, and spiritual support to someone else–in this case, to any elderly person or someone with a life-threatening illness.

Q: So how is this different from hospice?
A: Remember, hospice manages the medical care, but the loved ones do the care. The hospice nurse teaches the family how to care for their loved one. Generally, the family will see the hospice nurse once a week, and an aide may be present for either one or two hours a day for 2-3 times a week. If your loved one needs more hands on care than that, it is either provided by the family or through non-medical home care agencies like Comfort Keepers.

Q: How will I know when to call you?
A: The sooner, the better! We can help in many meaningful ways from diagnosis right on through the process.

Q: Will I still require hospice care?
A: Yes. Hospice offers many wonderful services. And let’s face it; you’ll take all the help you can get. We will work right alongside your hospice provider.

Q: Will you provide nursing or medical services?
A: No. We will not be able to provide these services. However, having worked many years giving hands-on care to the dying person, we will be able to advise you when these services are needed.

Q: So then, what does a Doula do?
A: Our doulas are specially trained non-medical health care professionals, many of whom are nurses. They are specifically trained in all three phases of end of life care. Based on their extensive training, the doulas offer suggestions for comfort to the patient and family. They provide support to the family and patient during all phases of care. They are not home health aides; rather, they are professionals who guide the family and patient through the often times stressful journey.

Q: Are your Doulas certified?
A: All our doulas are graduates certified through the Suzanne B. O’Brien End of Life Doula Training Program (www.susanbobrien.com).

Q: Can I leave my loved one in your care?
A: Yes. We will be able to provide respite care so you can run errands, go to church–even get a nap!

Q: How do we contact you for help?
A: You can contact us at 203-689-7004 or fill out the form on our contact page.

Q: What are some examples of services?
A: Assist patient with the preparation of key documents including advance directives, wills, and end of life planning; create remembrances for family and friends; work with patient on writing obituaries, eulogies, and making funeral arrangements; educate both patient and family on end of life options and all three phases of end of life; and advising on the kind of support needed at different times throughout the phases.