The Finances of End-of-Life Care


When facing the many challenges at the end of life, families should be able to focus on ensuring comfort and quality of life for their loved one. But studies show that concerns about paying for end-of-life care often take priority. As baby boomers age, and provide care for their aging parents, these concerns are justified. In addition to providing quality medical care and emotional support, hospice care can also ease these financial concerns. For more than 30 years, the Medicare Hospice Benefit has provided a comprehensive and cost-effective model of end-of-life care. This benefit covers virtually all aspects of hospice care with little out-of-pocket expense to the patient or family. The National Hospice and Palliative Care Organization reports that more than 10 million Medicare beneficiaries have received this high quality care at the end of life. About 80 percent of hospice care is paid for through the Medicare Hospice Benefit. In addition, most private health plans HMOs, and Medicaid in 47 States and the District of Columbia cover hospice services. Medicare covers these hospice services and pays nearly all of their costs:

  • Professional services (like nursing care and physician services)
  • Nursing care
  • Medical equipment (like wheelchairs or hospital beds in the home)
  • Medical supplies (like bandages and catheters)
  • Drugs for symptom control and pain relief
  • Short-term care in the hospital, including respite and inpatient for pain and symptom management
  • Social work services
  • Dietary counseling
  • Grief support

If your loved one does not have coverage through Medicare, Medicaid or a private insurance company, Karen Ann Quinlan Hospice will work you and your family to ensure needed services are provided. Hospice and palliative care involves a team-oriented approach to expert medical care, pain management, and emotional and spiritual support expressly tailored to the patient’s needs and wishes. By helping to alleviate financial concerns, The Medicare Hospice Benefit can ease some of the burdens often associated with caring for a seriously ill loved one, allowing families to focus on the quality and loving care that everyone deserves. Karen Ann Quinlan Hospice can provide you with all the information needed. Please call us at 800-882-1117 and ask to speak to one of our social workers. This information is provided by the Karen Ann Quinlan Hospice and the National Hospice and Palliative Care Organization.

Posted in Press Releases.