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Hospice care, unlike other varieties of long-term care, does not aim to cure a patient’s terminal illness. Caregivers instead focus on providing support for patients while treating their daily symptoms. Hospice services are primarily provided in a patient’s home, but can also be available in hospitals, nursing homes, and hospice centers. Most payors include hospice care in their insurance coverage, including Medicare, Medicaid, and health maintenance organizations (HMOs).
Because hospice caregivers are largely operating in people’s homes, they work closely with patient’s family members to provide personalized care. Each patent has a unique care plan based on their needs for pain management and symptom relief. The hospice team will consult with a patient’s primary care physician, hospice physicians, nurses, home health aides, and other specialists such as clergy or social workers if requested. Hospice staff make regular visits to a patient’s home, and are on-call around the clock to ensure patient wellbeing.
|Hospice Name||Total Medicare Pmts||Medicare Claims|
|Vitas Healthcare Corporation of Florida Melbourne||$460,721,365||95,726|
|Lifepath Hospice - Tampa||$76,700,354||19,394|
|Hospice Of Palm Beach County INC||$76,014,727||18,720|
|Mid-County Community Service Center (FKA Suncoast Hospice)||$74,972,738||19,733|
|Community Hospice Of Northeast Florida INC (AKA: Earl B Hadlow Center for Caring)||$67,495,368||17,096|
|Tidewell Hospice - Sarasota Hospice House||$65,142,662||18,548|
|Hospice Of The Western Reserve INC||$64,408,687||17,087|
|Hope Hospice And Community Services INC (AKA: Hope Healthcare)||$63,235,780||15,475|
|M J H S Hospice And Palliative Care||$62,808,073||12,719|
|Visiting Nurse Service Of Ny Hospice Care||$58,415,522||12,748|
Fig1 Data from Definitive Healthcare
Hospice care is usually equated with end-of-life care, though it is available to patients regardless of age or ability. Most patients receiving hospice care are expected to live for six months or less. Hospice teams are equipped to provide a wide variety of services, such as pain and symptom management, as well as emotional support, provision of medication and medical equipment, occupational and speech therapy, and more. Hospice aides also provide support and education for a patient’s family members, including education on caregiving and bereavement counseling.
Though most patients are only expected to live for six months, hospice care can be provided for as long as a patient is affected by a life-limiting illness. One of the most common illnesses affecting hospice patients is cancer, but other common illnesses include heart disease, dementia, kidney failure, and chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD).
Another unique aspect of hospice care is the effect on a patient’s family members. Many patients who receive hospice care have been previously cared for by their families. This can be burdensome for the family emotionally and financially, and create a strain on the relationship between the patient and their family members. Hospice care can ease or eliminate that tension, allowing families to enjoy their limited time together.
Additionally, hospice care allows for a patient to receive care at a facility for a period of time during their treatment. This gives familial caregivers the opportunity to rest without worrying about the wellbeing of their terminally-ill family member. The patient can then continue receiving care in their own home. Such an arrangement is commonly known as respite care.
|Hospice Name||Total Medicare Pmts||Medicare Claims|
|Heart to Heart Hospice - San Antonio||10,330||2,761|
|Legacy Hospice & Palliative Care||6,567||669|
|Altus Hospice - North Houston||832||1,495|
|Mary Washington Hospice||638||1,987|
|Oklahoma Hospice Care - Oklahoma City||575||729|
|Guymon Home Health & Hospice||436||46|
|Hosanna Hospice LLC||429||91|
|ONHL Hospice Services LLC||398||285|
|Louisiana Hospice Of Greater New Orleans LLC||295||227|
|Intrepid USA Hospice Radford||259||304|
Fig2 Data from Definitive Healthcare
At any time while receiving hospice care, a patient may be admitted to a hospital if their pain becomes overwhelming or other issues arise. If desired, the patient may include spiritual or religious leaders on their hospice team to reduce the emotional burden of end-of-life care. Trained hospice volunteers are also an option for the care team, and can offer companionship, transportation assistance, and other practical support. Hospice care is among the most flexible and customizable forms of long-term care.
Hospices and hospice corporations can be proprietary or non-profit. They can also be affiliated with the National Hospice and Palliative Care Organization, which ensures adherence to national laws and regulations. Hospice guidelines are also available on the CMS website.
Visit the Definitive Blog to read more about assisted living facilities and other long-term care organizations.
Definitive Healthcare has the most comprehensive, up-to-date, integrated data and analytics on the healthcare industry. Our database tracks more than 8,800 hospitals, 1.5 million physicians, 6,600 hospice organizations, and dozens of other care facilities.
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