Medicare, Medicaid, and many private insurance companies cover hospice. Patients and their families can contact their insurance provider to see what their particular coverage includes, such as the number of visits to the home by hospice nurses or the length of time allowed in a hospice facility. Before beginning hospice, patients may be required to sign an agreement stating they will forgo additional hospital trips for aggressive treatment or similar procedures.
“Even if a person or family cannot afford hospice services, religious communities like the Little Sisters of the Poor and other orders care for individuals who do not have the financial means required by other care centers.”
Patients and their families should always read the fine print carefully to know their specific coverage. If a hospice patient continues to receive services for longer than what is covered by his or her insurance, additional charges can sometimes be incurred. Social workers can often help navigate the process, offer support, and answer questions.