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Pink Clouds

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What is Hospice?

Hospice cares for patients with advanced illness by focusing on pain relief, symptom management, and emotional and spiritual end-of-life issues. Hospice is palliative, not curative. In other words, hospice does not try to cure disease.

How do I know if a patient is eligible for hospice?

When a patient/caregiver decides that the focus of care is now palliative and not curative their loved one may be eligible for hospice services. The team at Heritage can help guide you through this process. Required eligibility includes:

  • A diagnosis with a life expectancy of 6 months or less if the disease runs its normal curse.
  • The patient’s doctor and hospice medical director certify that the patient is terminally ill with a life expectancy of 6 months or less.

How do I know when a patient may be ready for hospice services?

When the burden of treatment becomes to much for the patient and/or family hospice may be the best solution.

What are possible hospice indicators?

  • Increased weakness, fatigue, & multiple falls
  • Overall progressive decline in physical functioning/ multiple falls
  • Progressive Weight loss and decrease oral intake
  • Recurrent Infections and/or ER visits and hospitalizations
  • Uncontrolled symptoms such as pain, nausea, & shortness of breath
  • Increase time sleeping
  • Change in mental status and inability to communicate needs

Who pays for hospice?

Medicare A & Managed Medicare plans: Cover hospice at 100% of allowable services. Medicaid coverage varies by state; typically covers at 100% of allowable services. Managed Medicaid Plans: Prior authorization is needed for hospice. Reimbursement varies by plan. Private Commercial Insurance plans: Coverage Varies. Benefits must be verified Individuals who do not have Medicare but have coverage from private insurance should contact their health plan directly for specific details on hospice care, including what the patient’s plan will cover and which out-of-pocket costs the patient and their family may be responsible for. Medicaid provides coverage, but it varies by state.

Why choose Heritage Hospice?

Our team of advanced illness experts provide an elevated dedication to every patient's care, taking into account his or her changing physical, emotional and spiritual needs. Our ultimate goal is to support both our patients and their loved ones while honoring their wishes and ensuring comfort. We achieve this goal by utilizing our extensive experience in end-of-life care and finding creative solutions to any complication that may arise.