St. Peter's Health Hospice is Helena’s only nonprofit hospice program, offering services to Helena residents and people in surrounding communities.
Our multidisciplinary care team provides compassionate, quality care centered around dignity and respect. Our goal is to make sure anyone who wants hospice can access it.
What is Hospice Care?
Hospice care is supportive care rather than curative care. This means that a person with a life-threatening illness chooses to stop receiving medical care intended to cure the illness, and instead, seeks care that focuses on quality of life.
Hospice care addresses the physical, emotional and spiritual needs of terminally ill patients and their families. Hospice care is provided in the patient’s home or place of residence (e.g., nursing home or assisted living facility).
When to Consider Hospice Care
You may want to consider hospice if you have an advanced life–threatening illness, and you prefer comfort care rather than curative care.
Patients are usually referred to hospice by a primary physician who can certify that the person likely has six months or less to live.
Illnesses and conditions eligible for hospice include end-stage:
- Heart disease
- Lung disease
- Liver disease
- Kidney disease
- Neurological disease, such as amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS) or Alzheimer’s disease
St. Peter’s Approach to Hospice
- You and your family provide input to help us develop your plan of care. You and your family are also directly involved in decision–making and caregiving throughout hospice.
- We work closely with physicians, skilled nursing facilities, assisted living homes and the Veteran’s Administration.
- Hospice services are covered by Medicare, Medicaid and many private health insurances. No one is refused hospice services because of lack of reimbursement.
- Professional services are available on an on-call basis at all times.
Hospice Programs and Services
- Medical Social Work
- Certified Home Health Aides
- End-of-Life Care
- Medical Equipment and Supplies
- Medications Related to Terminal Diagnosis
- On-Call Nursing 24 hours a day, 7 days a week
- Pain and Symptom Management
- Palliative Care
- Personal Care (e.g., Bathing, Feeding, Skin Care)
- Psychological Support Services
- Spiritual Support (Chaplain)
- Bereavement Services
Quality Hospice Care at St. Peter’s
- Emotional support: Our medical social worker provides emotional support and helps with accessing community resources. In addition, our chaplain offers counseling and spiritual support.
- Trained volunteers offer additional therapies: Volunteers at St. Peter’s Health provide respite and companionship for patients in hospice care. They also offer specialized services including:
- Music therapy
- Recording of life stories
- Assistance with household tasks including light housekeeping and meal preparation
- Readily available medical equipment and supplies: St. Peter’s Hospice owns its own medical equipment and supplies, so we can send them to your home. Available equipment includes:
- Hospital beds
- Bed-side commodes
- Shower chairs
- Bath benches
- Over-the-bed tables
- Other equipment as needed
- Inpatient hospice care for severe symptom management: In addition to care where you live, we offer hospice care for patients in the hospital if symptoms cannot be managed in the home environment.
- Bereavement support: We provide grief support to family members for up to one year following the patient’s death. This includes monthly informational mailings, grief counseling and support groups.
Comprehensive care team
Nurses certified in pain and symptom management and end–of–life care with RN on–call emergency support available 24 hours a day.
Certified Home health aides
Certified Home health aides to assist with bathing and personal care need
Medical social worker
A medical social worker to assist with emotional and mental stressors, end-of-life conversations and planning, and access to community resources.
A chaplain to provide spiritual support and counseling.
Trained volunteers to provide respite and companionship and specialized services including music therapy, massage, and the recording of life stories, and assistance with household tasks including light housekeeping and meal preparation. Click here for more information on volunteering at St. Peter's.
Trained bereavement staff offering support for family and friends for up to one year after a loved one's death.