Recently, Medicare launched a new online tool to help families and caregivers compare hospice agencies in their local area based on the quality of care they provide. Among other things, the tool compares how often the hospice agencies ask patients or caregivers about treatment preferences at the beginning of hospice care, as well as how responsive the hospice agencies are to pain, shortness of breath, constipation, and other common conditions experienced by patients receiving hospice care. Given the wide range of hospice agencies available for comparison, this tool should prove to be a valuable resource for families and caregivers looking for quality hospice care in their community.

In addition to the comparison tool, Medicare has made available various informational materials to help educate families about what to look for when selecting a hospice agency. For instance, there is a checklist with suggested questions to ask hospice agencies about their services, plus a summary of what type of hospice care Medicare covers and the requirements you must meet to be eligible for Medicare-covered hospice care.

If you or someone you know has any questions about hospice care or any other long-term care issues, please contact an attorney at Lowry & Lowry, PLLC, or another Louisville Elder Law attorney as soon as possible.