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4 Levels of Care

Hospice patients may require differing intensities of care during the course of their disease. The Medicare Hospice Benefit affords patients four levels of care to meet their clinical needs: Routine Home Care, General Inpatient Care, Continuous Home Care, and Inpatient Respite Care. Payment for each covers all aspects of the patient’s care related to the terminal illness, including all services delivered by the Interdisciplinary team, medication, medical equipment and supplies.

We at Divine Mercy Hospice offer all 4 levels of care.

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Routine Hospice Care is the most common level of hospice care. With this type of care, an individual has elected to receive hospice care at their residence, which can include a private residence, assisted living facility or nursing facility. Nearly ninety-seven percent of hospice care is provided at the routine home care level.

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Continuous Home Care is care provided for between 8 and 24 hours a day to manage pain and other acute medical symptoms. Continuous home care services must be predominately nursing care, supplemented with –caregiver and hospice aide services and are intended to maintain the terminally ill patient at home during a pain or symptom crisis.

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Inpatient Respite Care is available to provide temporary relief to the patient’s primary caregiver. Respite care can be provided in a hospital, hospice facility, or a long term care facility that has sufficient 24 hour nursing personnel present on all shifts to guarantee that patient’s needs are met. Respite care is provided for a maximum of 5 consecutive days.

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General Inpatient Care is provided for pain control or other acute symptom management that cannot feasibly be provided in any other setting. General Inpatient Care begins when other efforts to manage symptoms have been ineffective. General Inpatient Care can be provided in a Medicare certified hospital, hospice inpatient facility, or nursing facility that has a registered nursing available 24 hours a day to provide direct patient care.