Determining Eligibility

Ultimately, hospice and palliative care referrals should weigh a physician's experienced clinical judgement, Medicare regulations, if applicable, and input from family members. Physicians, directors, and admissions coordinators at our local programs are available to answer your questions.


Medicare eligibility

To elect hospice under Medicare, an individual must be entitled to Medicare Part A and certified as being terminally ill by a physician and have a prognosis of six months or less, if the disease runs its normal course. 

Code of Federal Regulations - Eligibility, Election and Duration of Benefits


Hospice evaluation and counseling

For families considering hospice, Medicare enables physicians to work with hospice agency physicians or staff to:

  • Evaluate the individual’s need for pain and symptom management
  • Counsel the individual regarding hospice and other end-of-life options
  • Talk about advanced care planning


To receive these services, a beneficiary must:

Have a terminal illness, defined as having a prognosis of 6 months or less, not have made a hospice election, and not previously received the pre-election services.


More hospice eligibility general guidelines

The Compassus Difference

Compassus advocates and respects the right of the patient and family to:


  • Enjoy their best quality of life
  • Have their values and wishes honored
  • Experience dignity in their care
  • Receive care in their environment of choice
  • Know what to expect
  • Receive continued support


Compassus locations are licensed by states and fully certified by Medicare and Medicaid. Our Hospice physicians and nursing staff are available 24/7, with around-the-clock care when necessary.