Legislator’s plan allows hospices to properly manage pain for patients
State Rep. Bronna Kahle today delivered testimony before the House Health Policy Committee on her legislation protecting the ability of hospices to promptly care for and manage patients with dignity during the last days of life. She was joined by Amy Francoeur, Director of Patient Care for Hospice of Lenawee, who testified in support of Kahle’s plan.
In 2018, new state laws went into effect to combat the state’s opioid epidemic. While Kahle supports the efforts to put an end to the opioid crisis, she says the new law inadvertently jeopardizes the ability of hospice organizations to attend to the intense and immediate medical needs of patients at the end of life.
“People in hospice care are at their most vulnerable, and they deserve proper pain treatment to make their end-of-life transition as comfortable as possible,” said Kahle, of Adrian. “Hospices need efficient access to medication to administer the right kind of care to patients at their most fragile time.”
Because most hospice care is done in the patient’s home, which can be hours away from the hospice prescriber, personal visits from a prescriber are difficult, sometimes impossible, in a crisis situation. In the final days of life, pain can become unbearable and difficult to manage. Kahle’s proposed solution would ensure timely access to pain relief for end-of-life patients receiving hospice care.
House Bill 4225 under consideration by the House Health Policy Committee.
PHOTO INFORMATION: Amy Francoeur, right, joins Rep. Bronna Kahle, center, as she delivers testimony before the House Health Policy Committee regarding her legislation to ensure best possible end-of-life practices for hospice patients.