How to Choose Hospice Care

By | December 30, 2020

Determining the correct hospice care you or perhaps a cherished one requires at the end-of-life might seem such as a daunting task to take on during a currently difficult time. In a recent blog describing hospice and palliative care, I’ve received many responses from readers who would like to know how to select a hospice program that’s right for them. Several readers have shared their experiences with me on hospice care; the right, and others bad. I’ve compiled some suggestions from industry experts to simply help take the guesswork out of selecting a hospice hospice care near me.

Among the first things to remember when beginning your search for hospice care is to realize hospices are first and foremost a business, and while a well-intended business, they want yours. Nevertheless, it`s important to ask questions and get answers before committing to anything. Differences between hospices are often hard to determine as they tend to offer similar services. While memberships in state hospice organizations and The National Hospice and Palliative Care Organization (NHPCO) may appear impressive, these are open to any hospice. What does matter is that the hospice is Medicare certified, as Medicare provides the baseline requirements for quality care.

To qualify for Medicare certification, hospices must offer 16 separate core and auxiliary services. Core services include bereavement counseling, nutritional services and doctor services. Continuous home care, physical therapy, medication administration and household services are examples of auxiliary services. Also important is whether a hospice need your insurance. The Hospice Blog offers some very nice advice and tips that will help streamline the search process for you. First, find out who owns the hospice agency you are considering, and what the owner`s background is. Could be the hospice service nonprofit, for profit or government operated? The type of ownership may influence the services a hospice patient receives. And speak to the administrator when contacting a hospice.

Let’s face it, the administrator has the authority to say yes or no to anything the hospice office assistant or hospice employer has promised you. If you have found a hospice that meets your preferences, make certain it is the house office, rather than branch. Generally, the nurse who resides at the house office has access to the individual in charge. Branch offices will not have employees who make financial or business decisions. Finally, before selecting a hospice, find out where the on-call nurse lives. If the nurse lives far away from the individual requiring hospice care, the response time can take longer.