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How Quickly Can Hospice Be Set Up?

How Quickly Can Hospice be Set Up?

Most terminally ill people enter hospice care in their final weeks or days. However, some people start hospice during an earlier stage of the disease. How quickly a hospice will be set up depends on the person’s condition and the care needed at the end of life.

Most of the time, it doesn’t take more than a few days to set up a hospice. In some cases, though, it can be set up on the same day. To establish hospice care, patients must discontinue curative therapy for their condition. Typically, such a choice is made in consultation with the patient’s doctor.

The doctor must also fill out the paperwork confirming a six-month or shorter life expectancy.

The next step involves getting the appropriate paperwork, such as Medicare certification for hospice care, and calling the referral center (available 24/7) or contacting a local hospice organization to set up an assessment and determine the level of care the patient needs and prefers.