You may know what an end-of-life doula WILL do, but do you know what a doula will NOT do? There are two hard stops for me – money and medication. The other two items – insurance and orders – do not fall into the scope of doula services.
Will a doula manage my money? A doula will not handle your finances or pay your bills. There are bankers, financial and estate planners, and hopefully family members to assist with your money matters.
Will a doula give administer my medication? A doula typically doesn’t administer medication, but can observe you taking your pills on your schedule. If you require assistance with meds, a special contract could be initiated outlining clear expectations. I am not licensed to write prescriptions; this will be done through your medical provider or hospice team.
Will a doula bill our medical insurance? At this time, doula services are not reimbursed or covered by medical insurance, Medicare, or Medicaid.
Will a doula change hospice or physician orders? As a doula, I serve in a non-medical role. I do not make changes to your provider/hospice orders. As part of your care team, the doula is another set of eyes and ears for you and your family. If there is a change in your condition, your doula may contact other members of your team and family so care can be adjusted if necessary.
You will have many more questions for your team – it is a good idea to keep a notebook handy to write down your questions as they come up. Encourage your family and caregivers to add their questions to your notebook so they can be addressed as soon as possible. Please don’t hesitate to call your provider, hospice team, or doula if you have an urgent question.