When should a decision about entering a hospice program be made and who should make it?

At any time during a life-limiting illness, it’s appropriate to discuss all of a patient’s care options, including hospice. By law the decision belongs to the patient or their surrogate decision maker. Most hospices accept patients who have a life-expectancy of six months or less and who are referred by a physician. The team at Resolutions Hospice is always available to discuss any questions or concerns you or your family may have regarding eligibility.

Should I wait for our physician to raise the possibility of hospice, or should I raise it first?

The Patients and families should feel free to discuss hospice care at any time with their physician, other health care professionals, clergy or friends. Most physicians are fully informed about hospice. If your physician wants more information, Resolutions Hospice has staff available 24 hours a day to answer any questions that anyone may have. Additionally, they can arrange a consultation by clicking here.

What does the admission process for hospice involve?

One of the first things we will do is contact the patient’s physician to make sure they are in agreement that hospice care is appropriate for the patient at this time. The patient will also be asked to sign consent and insurance forms. These forms are similar to what a patient may sign when entering a hospital. The Hospice Election Form states that the patient understands the care is for comfort, aimed at pain relief and symptom control rather than reaching a cure. It outlines the services available to the patient. The form Medicare patients sign tells how electing the Medicare Hospice Benefit affects other Medicare coverage for terminal illness.