Q: When is hospice
A: Hospice care is often appropriate when a patient has reached
the final phases of a terminal illness, however this option can be
discussed at any time during the illness. When patients elect hospice,
they are making a decision to receive comfort care rather than curative
Q: Who is eligible for hospice care?
A: The patient’s attending physician must certify that a patient
has a life-limiting illness with an expectancy of six months if the
disease runs its natural course. The patient must agree to receive
Q: Can we keep our own doctor?
A: Yes. If this is not possible or preferred, our specially
trained hospice physicians can see the patient and guide the care plan.
Q: What if the patient’s condition improves?
A: At times, hospice care can improve life expectancy. When this
happens, we will transfer the patient to another level of care. Later,
if the patient becomes eligible for hospice again, they can re-elect the
Q: Is someone available 24 hours a day, seven days a week?
A: Yes. Not all problems occur between the hours of 8 a.m. and 5
p.m. We have a nurse on call after hours to help answer questions and
assess your situation. Other professionals are available also, such as
the chaplain and social workers. You can rest assured your call will be
handled quickly and appropriately.
Q: Do I need to have a DNR (Do Not Resuscitate order) in order to
A: No. Having a DNR in place is not a requirement to receive
hospice care. Signing a DNR means that you do not want to be
resuscitated with CPR or other means should your breathing or heart
Q: Is hospice only for cancer patients?
A: No. In reality, 51 percent of patients are admitted to hospice
with chronic, non-cancer diagnoses.
Q: Who pays for this service?
A: Medicare and Medicaid will pay 100% of your hospice services.
Private insurance also usually has provisions for hospice at no