Billing for Hospice Services
Hospice is considered skilled health services and is covered by Medicare, Medicaid, and most private health insurance plans. Provided all eligibility requirements are met, Medicare and Medicaid will pay for all home visits, medications, supplies, and equipment related to end of life care. Some private insurance plans require a co-pay or deductible. Contact your insurance company to determine if hospice services are covered under your plan.
If insurance coverage is not available, hospice care can be provided to patients for a set daily fee, regardless of the amount of visits, medications, or equipment required in the home environment. Individuals and families who cannot afford the cost of services can complete an application for financial assistance. Inability to pay or lack of insurance is never a barrier to receiving care.
Hospice patients continue to receive care from their regular physician. Their physician is able to bill most insurance for any services that are rendered.
Attending physicians should contact their billing staff with any questions or concerns regarding reimbursement for services.
Palliative Care & Pain Management
Hospice medical directors and registered nurses are experts in pain management. Through many years of clinical work in the hospice field they have learned that what may be appropriate and effective for one patient’s pain may not be the correct course of action for others.
Pain management and palliative care focuses on relief of pain and symptom management. Decisions on pain management are made by hospice medical staff and the patient’s own physician after discussion with family and patients regarding their desires and wishes (do I want to be alert? What are the side effects of certain medications?) and in consultation with you, their primary care physician.
Patients and families work together with the palliative care and pain management teams to improve the patient’s quality of life. Our specialized teams monitor each patient’s response to find the right therapy to improve their comfort level while minimizing side effects. Together we decide what is the course of action which best suits their needs.