Frequently Asked Questions

What is hospice?

Hospice care is a special kind of care that focuses on the quality of life for people and their caregivers who are experiencing an advanced, life-limiting illness. Hospice care provides compassionate care for people in the last phases of incurable disease so that they may live as fully and comfortably as possible.

Who would benefit from hospice care?

Many people with a serious illness use hospice care. A serious illness may be defined as a disease or condition with a high risk of death or one that negatively affects a person’s quality of life or ability to perform daily tasks. It may cause symptoms or have treatments that affect daily life and lead to caregiver stress. Examples of serious illnesses include dementia, cancer, heart failure, and chronic obstructive lung disease.

When should I start hospice care?

Despite the benefits of using hospice care, many people wait to receive hospice care until the final weeks or days of life. It’s important to talk with your doctor about your illness and how your disease is progressing. Starting hospice early may be able to provide months of meaningful care and quality time with loved ones.

What are the benefits of using hospice care?

Studies have shown that when a person enrolls in hospice care they are more likely to have increased family satisfaction and better symptom and pain management. They are also less likely to undergo tests or be given medication they don’t need or want.

NIH National Institute on Aging (NIA).

What services does hospice care provide?

Hospice care can provide a range of different services depending on your symptoms and care wishes. These services include, but are not limited to, emotional and spiritual support for the person and their family, relief of symptoms and pain, medical equipment, help with advance care planning, therapy services, like physical or occupational therapy, and much more.

Am I eligible for hospice care?

Anyone with a serious illness who doctors think has a short time to live — generally 6 months or less —usually qualifies for hospice care. For Medicare to pay for hospice care, patients must stop medical treatment intended to cure or control their illness.

Will my insurance cover hospice care?

Tradional Medicare covers 100% of hospice costs for those that meet eligibility requirements. Most Medicaid and private insurance providers will cover some of the services provided by hospice. Older adults enrolled in Medicare can receive hospice care if their healthcare provider thinks they have 6 months or less to live. In most cases, they will need to sign a statement choosing hospice care instead of other Medicare-covered treatments for their illness. Please call us to answer any questions you may have.