We are dedicated to providing hospice care to every person eligible for our services, regardless of age, diagnosis, or ability to pay. Coverage for our care depends upon a physician’s certification that a person’s life expectancy is six months or fewer if the illness runs its normal course. Because making this determination can be difficult, the National Hospice and Palliative Care Organization has published medical criteria for determining prognosis of certain diagnoses. These guidelines form a reasonable approach to the determination of life expectancy based on available research.
If a person meets the medical criteria, he or she is, by definition, eligible to receive hospice services. Some people may not meet the criteria, but may still be eligible for hospice care due to other co-morbidities or rapid functional decline. It is the physician’s clinical judgment regarding the normal course of a person’s illness that determines a prognosis of six months or fewer.
Eligibility Criteria by Illness