Choosing a Hospice
The following information is from the Medicare website:
To guide you and your family in finding hospice care, consider what’s important to you and think about the questions below. This is not a complete list, but a way to start the conversation about the care you desire.
- Does the hospice accept my insurance?
- What services and treatments will be covered?
- How long has the hospice been serving patients?
- Where are hospice services provided?
- Will the hospice provide a hospital bed and other medical equipment I might need?
- Will I have the same hospice nurse? What other members of the hospice team might I see, and how often will I see them?
- How many patients are assigned to each hospice nurse?
- Does the hospice have help after business hours? Nights? Weekends? Holidays?
- When I call with an urgent need, how long will it take for someone from the hospice team to respond?
- How will the hospice team manage my pain or other symptoms that arise?
- Can I take my current medications?
- What if my symptoms become uncontrollable at home? Can I go to the hospital?
Communication, coordination, and education
- How will the hospice team keep me and my family informed about my condition?
- Will my family and I be involved in making care decisions?
- How do I communicate any questions or concerns I have about my care?
- Can I still see my regular doctor if I am on hospice? If yes, how will the hospice team coordinate care with my doctor?
- How will the hospice team prepare me and my family for what to expect?
- Can we speak with other caregivers to learn of their experience with the hospice?
- What support services are offered by the hospice? What are our options if we need a break from providing care?
- What if we cannot take care of our loved one at home?
- How will the hospice team support us emotionally through the grieving process?
Here's a link to this checklist in PDF form: