About Hospice

What is Hospice: Caring Hospice Services

Hospice Philosophy

What is Hospice?

The philosophy of hospice is simple and compelling: Individuals with life-limiting medical conditions should be made as comfortable as possible, and have their quality of life maximized, physically, emotionally, socially and spiritually.

In practice, hospice focuses on managing and alleviating pain and symptoms while maintaining the patient’s dignity. Hospice fosters a love and appreciation for family and life experiences, and helps patients accept their situation with hope and encouragement rather than despair. Because no two situations are alike, hospice caregivers coordinate an individualized plan of care that is specifically designed to meet the needs of each individual.

Hospice Payment

Who Pays for Hospice?

Because hospice has become widely recognized as a preferred approach for end of life care, it is covered by Medicare, Medicaid and most private insurance plans. Significantly, this includes not only the costs of caregiver services but also medications, medical equipment and medical supplies.

Hospice Eligible Conditions

Who is Hospice for?

People typically consider hospice care in situations of life limiting medical conditions such as:

End-stage Alzheimer’s Disease

End-stage Cardiovascular Disease

End-stage Congestive Heart Failure (CHF)

End-stage Cerebrovascular Disease (CVA)

End-stage Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease (COPD)

End-stage Peripheral Vascular Disease (PVD)

End-stage Renal Disease

End-stage Liver Disease

Malignant Diseases

Acquired Immune Deficiency Syndrome (AIDS) 

Hospice Indicators

that you or someone you love is candidate for hospice care

 These indicators do not replace professional judgment, before taking any action please consult with your physician.

Frequent Hospitalization

Significant weight loss

Frequent Doctor or ER Visits

Diagnosed With a Limited Life Expectancy.

Disinterest in Continuing Aggressive Treatments

Decreasing Alertness, Withdrawal or Mental confusion

Experiences Shortness of Breath Even Without Exertion

Needs Assistance With 2 or More Regular Daily Activities

Frequent Hospitalization

Frequent Doctor or ER Visits

Significant Weight Loss

Diagnosed With a Limited Life Expectancy.

Decreasing Alertness, Withdrawal or Mental confusion

Shortness of Breath (Even Without Exertion)

Needs Assistance With 2 or More Regular Daily Activities

Disinterest in Continuing Aggressive Treatments

Dispelling Top-10 Hospice Myths



Hospice is for people who have “no hope”.

When patients choose hospice care, they are not giving up.  They are taking control.  Caring Hospice Services provides professional medical care, aggressive pain and symptom management and focuses on helping patients live life fully and maintain dignity.


Hospice care is expensive.

Hospice care is considerably less costly than care provided in other medical settings.  It is covered by Medicare, Medicaid and most other types of insurance. Caring Hospice Services will also consider those who do not have insurance.


Hospice is for people who have only a few days to live.

Hospice care can be provided when a cure is no longer possible and it is believed a patient has six months or less to live.  Important to remember, the six months prognosis is a guideline.  Unfortunately, many people enter the program too late to fully benefit from the many services available to them and their families.  People often tell us: “We wish we had entered the hospice program sooner”.


Hospice requires family members to be available to provide care.

While family members are usually trained to care for their loved ones at home – with the support of their hospice team and 24-hour on-call availability of a hospice nurse – there are many cases in which this is not possible.  We provide care to all people regardless of caregiver availability in all settings, including private homes.



Hospice recognizes that end-of-life issues are diverse, confusing and stressful.  We encourage patients and families to consult with us earlier, as opposed to later, so they are aware of the various options available to them.  While a physician referral is ultimately required for admission to the hospice program, families can call Caring Hospice Services anytime for advice or information about any end-of-life concern.  Our phone number is 1-800-390-2998.


Hospice “dopes people up” so they become addicted or sleep all the time.

When patients have a legitimate need for pain medication, they do not become addicted to it.  Caring Hospice Services has expertise in managing pain and our priority is to keep patients comfortable, alert and able to enjoy each day to the fullest extent possible, given the circumstances of their medical condition. 


Hospice is a place.

Hospice is a philosophy of care, not a place.  Patients can receive hospice care wherever they live – usually in their own homes but also in nursing homes or assisted living facilities.


Hospice is only for people with cancer.

Though many patients do have cancer, hospice serves people of all ages with any life-limiting illness.  This includes cardiac, renal & neurological diseases, as well as AIDS, cirrhosis and Alzheimer’s.


Hospice is for patients who don’t need high-tech care.

End-of-life care is extremely complex and requires serious medications. Caring Hospice Services has specially trained physicians and nurses who provide comprehensive medical care, as well as state-of-the-art pain and symptom control, without the use of invasive technology. Their efforts are further enhanced by a team of other professionals and volunteers who provide a full range of support services for the entire family.


Hospice is only for people who will accept that they are dying.

Patients and their families often struggle to come to terms with their limited life expectancies.  However, hospice can help them address their fears, feelings and concerns and show them how to re-define hope within the context of their disease and personal lifestyles.  Hospice has helped guide thousands of families through this experience and recognizes that every patient and family is unique.  We work with each one in whatever ways they find most helpful.

FAQ's about hospice


Hospice is a choice. When patients choose hospice care, they are not giving up, they are taking control. The goal of hospice care is to help people with a life-limiting illness to live life fully, maintain their dignity and provide physical, emotional, social and spiritual support to the patient and family. The hospice philosophy is about focusing on the person, not the disease.

At any time during a life-limiting illness it is appropriate to discuss all patient care options, including hospice.

Yes! The patient and family should feel free to discuss hospice care at any time with their physician, other healthcare professionals, clergy or friends. Talk about the benefits of curative treatment vs. comfort care.

Yes. Hospice nurses discuss and coordinate all aspects of care with your physician. A Hospice Medical Director is available for consultation with the patient’s doctor if needed.

Caring Hospice Services provides professional medical care, aggressive pain and symptom management and focuses on helping patients live life fully. Hospice has expertise in talking with patients and their families about life-limiting illnesses. We can meet with patients anywhere, anytime, to discuss their health needs, learn their personal feelings and desires, and introduce the concept of hospice care.

Caring Hospice Services serves persons of any age with any life-limiting illness, such as cancer, cardiac disease, renal disease, neurological illnesses, Lou Gehrig’s disease, AIDS, cirrhosis and Alzheimer’s.

When curative treatments are no longer effective and the physician believes the patient may have a life expectancy of six months or less, hospice is usually indicated. Important to remember, the six months prognosis is a guideline and patients can continue to receive hospice care for as long as physicians continue to re-certify the terminal illness.

An increase in pain, nausea, shortness of breath; repeated hospitalizations or trips to the emergency room; decrease in activities of daily living, such as bathing, dressing, toileting and eating; unintentional weight loss of 10% of body weight of a period of six months.

Patients on Caring Hospice Service are cared for by a team of physicians , nurses, social workers, chaplains, certified nursing assistants/certified home health aides, therapists and volunteers. Each member of the team provides assistance based on his or her own area of expertise. Hospice staff visit regularly and are accessible 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, to address medical questions provide support, and teach caregivers. In addition, hospice provides medications, medical supplies, equipment and treatments necessary to provide high-quality comfort care.

Hospice coverage is provided by Medicare, Medicaid, by most private insurance companies and managed care plans. Hospice care is also available to those who hve no insurance coverage.

Yes. Patients always have the right to choose what type of care they receive. Patients can be discharged from hospice and return later if the need arises.

Hospice neither hastens nor postpones dying. Hospice provides its presence and specialized knowledge during the dying process.

Hospice provides support for the family for at least one year after the death of a loved one. Hospice offers individual support as well as bereavement groups and memorial services.h

Absolutely. An important part of our mission is providing guidance to families about any end-of-life care issue, whether or not they are on our program. You don’t need a physician referral to call us for information. If it appears that hospice care would be beneficial, we will, with your permission, contact your doctor to discuss it.

Caring Hospice Services is available to counsel patients and their families whether hospice care is needed now or in the future.

Please do not hesitate to contact us with any questions you may have at 1-800-390-2998 or click here for a callback.