What is hospice and palliative care?
Palliative care, includes hospice, and refers to a compassionate, comprehensive team approach to care that focuses on quality of life for anyone coping with a serious illness, including the patient and family members.
The focus is on CARE, not CURE.
The belief of the hospice organization as a whole is that everyone has the right to die pain-free and with their dignity (Hospice Care, 2015)
Hospice Team Members
- nurses's aides
- social workers
- therapists (speech, physical, occupational)
- bereavement counselors
- spiritual/religious mentors
MEDICARE HOSPICE GUIDELINES
■ Your hospice doctor and your regular doctor (if you have one) certify that you’re terminally ill (with a life expectancy of 6 months or less).
■ You accept palliative care (for comfort) instead of care to cure your illness.
■ You sign a statement choosing hospice care instead of other Medicare-covered treatments for your terminal illness and related conditions.
- Note: Only your hospice doctor and your regular doctor (if you have one) can certify that you’re terminally ill and have 6 months or less to live.
Facts and Figures
- 1.6 million people used hospice services in 2014
- Average length of service is 72 days
- Majority of patients are cared for in their residence, 58.9% of patients passed away in their own homes (1,200,000 people)
- 41% were 85 years of age or older
- 53.7% of patients were female, 46.3% were male
- 92% were of non-Hispanic or Latino ethnicity
- 85% of patients were covered by the Medicare hospice benefit
- There are over 6,100 operating hospice programs in the U.S.
- Cancer diagnosis account for less than half of all hospice admissions (36%)
- Non-cancer diagnosis= Dementia, heart disease, lung disease, stroke, AIDS, Alzheimer's, Parkinson's, and many others