Levels of Hospice Care
There are four levels of hospice care available.
Depending on the level of care needed you may be required to be transferred to an alternate care setting. Your level of care will depend on your needs and may change over the course of your treatment.
Routine Home Care—This care is provided in the comfort of your own home, whether a
private residence, assisted living facility or skilled nursing facility. An RN Case Manager will
oversee your care, working in close collaboration with your entire hospice team which includes
your Hospice Physician, Social Worker, Spiritual Care Provider and Home Health Aide. If you
are interested, you will also have access to a Volunteer, Bereavement Therapist and/or Creative
General Inpatient Care—General Inpatient level of care is for short-term acute episodes. It is
initiated when other efforts to manage symptoms at home are ineffective. This level of care is
provided in a hospice inpatient unit or skilled nursing facility. You will be closely monitored by an
RN Case Manager, who will work in consultation with your Hospice Physician, to ensure that you
continue to meet the criteria for this level of care. Once your condition is stabilized, you will be
expected to return to your residence. For more information on managing uncontrolled symptoms
and your options when receiving this level of care, please review Section 2 of this book.
Continuous Care (a.k.a Crisis Care)—This level of care is time-limited and offered only during a
symptom crisis. Skilled nursing care is provided in your residence for at least 8 hours a day and
may be provided for up to 24 hours, with the goal of treating your uncontrolled symptoms. Your
RN Case Manager, with the support of your Hospice Physician, will evaluate your status. Nursing
support will continue until your active symptoms are managed and stabilized. As determined by
the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) regulation, we can only provide this level of
care as an ongoing service if you are experiencing uncontrolled symptoms.
Respite Care—This short-term care is intended to provide temporary relief to the patient’s
primary caregiver. It is provided in a skilled nursing facility for up to five days during each hospice
certification period. It is recommended when your caregiver is unable to provide care for reasons
of travel, illness or caregiver fatigue. Our clinicians will provide you with a list of skilled nursing
facilities that we work with for this service