- Hospice care is for people with a life expectancy of six months or less, if the illness runs its normal course.
- Patients can receive hospice care if they accept palliative care (for comfort) instead of care to cure their illness and they sign a statement choosing hospice care instead of other Medicare-covered treatments for their terminal illness and related conditions.
- If a patient lives longer than six months, they can still receive hospice care, provided the hospice medical director recertifies that they are terminally ill.
- Patients have the right to change their hospice provider.
When determining if hospice is the right decision for yourself or a loved, the Heart to Heart Hospice survey Is it Time for Hospice? may be helpful.
Paying for Hospice:
Heart to Heart Hospice accepts payment for services from:
- VA benefits
- Most private insurance plans
Medicare beneficiaries who elect hospice care receive non-curative medical care and supportive services for their terminal illness covered at little to no expense.
All of the services, treatments, hospital stays, medical equipment, supplies, and medications related to the hospice diagnosis are provided by and must be authorized by the hospice interdisciplinary team for Medicare to maintain financial responsibility.
An individualized care plan based on the patient’s goals of care is created by the hospice care team and the patient’s physician. Starting hospice as early as possible helps ensure that the patient and family receive the maximum benefit allowed.