Understanding Hospice

Hospice is a special concept of care, focused on providing comfort, relieving pain, and offering support for persons with life-limiting health conditions and their families. Hospice provides pain and symptom relief, as well as emotional and spiritual support, typically in the last six months of life.

 Hospice care occurs wherever a person calls home. Hospice is not a “place”; patients receive hospice care at home, and home is broadly defined. Home may be a person’s residence, a nursing home or an assisted living facility, or a residential hospice.

 Hospice is open to people of all ages, including children, and to people who have different medical conditions. While approximately two out of three hospice patients are over the age of 65, hospice care is available across the lifespan. Hospice treats pa­tients with Alzheimer’s disease, cancer, heart disease, HIV/AIDS, and other illnesses.

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