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Hospice Eligibility Criteria for Cancer

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man holding the hand of nurse discusses hospice criteria for cancerRegarding hospice criteria for cancer, certain standards must be met for a patient to be eligible. Generally, hospice eligibility for cancer is based on the individual’s prognosis and current health status. In most cases, hospice care is appropriate when an individual has been diagnosed with a life-limiting illness and has a life expectancy of six months or less.

At Compassus, hospice eligibility is determined on a case-by-case basis. Our hospice team works closely with patients and their families to ensure that hospice care benefits them. We understand that hospice eligibility can be complicated, so our compassionate team of healthcare professionals is here to provide support and guidance throughout the process. Together, we can make hospice care a positive experience for patients and their loved ones.

If you or someone you know is facing a life-limiting illness, please contact us at 833.380.9583 to learn more about hospice criteria for cancer.

Hospice Eligibility for Cancer

To better understand hospice eligibility for cancer, it’s important to understand the hospice concept. Hospice is a type of care for those with life-limiting illnesses and provides relief from symptoms and pain and emotional support for patients and their families. Hospice eligibility generally depends on an individual’s prognosis and current health status. Patients will be considered to be in the terminal stage of cancer and eligible for hospice if they meet the following criteria:

Factors 1 and 2 must be present, and either factors 3 or 4 must be present. Consider all factors that impact the patient’s prognosis.

The factors are:

1. Palliative performance scale (PPS) <= 70%
2. Dependence on two or more activities of daily living
3. Pathology report reveals evidence of malignancy or metastases.
4. Progression from an earlier stage of the disease to metastatic disease with either:

  • The continued decline despite therapy
  • The patient declines further disease-directed therapy

It’s important to note that certain cancers with poor prognoses may be hospice eligible without fulfilling other criteria in this section.

Co-Morbid or Secondary Conditions

Co-morbid or secondary conditions may affect hospice eligibility. Co-morbid conditions exist concurrently with the terminal illness and can complicate hospice care. Patients whose primary diagnosis is not terminal but with multiple severe co-morbidities that significantly impair their quality of life may be eligible for hospice if all other criteria are met.

Co-morbid or secondary conditions such as:

  • Chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD)
  • Congestive heart failure (CHF)
  • Liver disease
  • Alcoholism
  • Renal failure
  • Dementia
  • Neurological disease

If a patient meets the medical criteria above, they are, by definition, eligible to receive hospice services. Some patients may not meet the criteria but may still be eligible for hospice care due to co-morbidities or rapid functional decline. Reach out to Compassus to better understand hospice eligibility criteria for cancer and other hospice-related questions.

Understanding the Cancer Hospice Criteria at Compassus

At Compassus, we understand how difficult and complex the decision-making process can be when assessing hospice eligibility for cancer patients. We want our patients and their families to understand what’s required to qualify for hospice care by clarifying the specifics of our criteria. The primary benefit of enrolling in a hospice program is assistance in managing pain and symptoms, an essential consideration for anyone facing a serious medical diagnosis. Our objective is to provide the individualized attention patients need throughout their journey so that they’re able to focus on their quality of life. Our understanding staff will guide you through these options and help you tailor solutions that best fit your needs.

Reach Out to Compassus Today

Hospice criteria for challenging are difficult to understand and navigate. At Compassus, hospice care professionals help you through the process. Our team is dedicated to providing compassionate guidance and support throughout hospice eligibility. If you or someone you know is facing a life-limiting illness, please contact us at 833.380.9583 for more information.