Resources to Help You Start the Conversation About Hospice Care

It’s a conversation no one wants to have because it lays bare the challenges faced ahead; yet talking to your loved ones about hospice and end-of-life care issues can provide assurance and comfort to your family members. Many of the families we help say that they wish they had started the conversation about hospice earlier.

We know that the best time to have these conversations is before an emergency or crisis arises, and at Lower Cape Fear LifeCare (formerly Lower Cape Fear Hospice), we’ve guided thousands of family members through these difficult discussions. We want you to be aware of the resources available to help you have this important dialogue with your family.

What is hospice care?

Hospice is an individualized service that offers assistance, education and health care to patients and their families who are facing the challenges of an advanced illness.  These may include:

  • Alzheimer’s
  • Stroke
  • ALS
  • Cancer
  • Heart disease
  • Dementia
  • Neurological diseases

Lower Cape Fear LifeCare is a non-profit hospice that offers compassionate comfort, respect, health care and assistance at any time of the day or night. We honor the wishes and desires of those we care for, and we understand how important it is that your loved ones understand your wishes.

This is one reason why we work closely with community organizations to help you Begin the Conversation.

Begin the Conversation Clinic

We offer several in-person seminars called Begin the Conversation at various times and locations throughout the community. During these sessions, we:

  • Review what a living will and health care power of attorney are, and when you may need them
  • Discuss ways to approach the conversation about end-of-life care with those you love
  • Encourage you to think about and evaluate what is important to you
  • Ask you to consider what care measures you want implemented
  • Establish clear communication with your immediate family so they will know your wishes
  • Discuss a MOST (Medical Order for Scope of Treatment) form, what it is and why it is important
  • Provide information on where to obtain more resources

We even offer a helpful Begin the Conversation workbook available to those who come to the clinic.

We will help you tackle this difficult subject.

According to estimates from the National Institutes of Health, roughly 85 to 95 percent of the population does not have advance directives clearly recorded in their medical record. This makes it even more important for everyone in your family to be very clear about your desires.

A living will, health care power of attorney and other documents often give relatives a sense of relief, providing assurance that they are fulfilling your wishes.

Need more information? You can find it on the website for Begin the Conversation.


Since 1980, Lower Cape Fear LifeCare (formerly Lower Cape Fear Hospice) has served patients and their families throughout southeastern North Carolina, serving patients where they live – in their homes, hospitals, assisted living and skilled nursing facilities. For more information on how to start the conversation about hospice, please call 1-800-733-1476.