When is it Time to Consider Hospice Care?

As Medicare’s first proven coordinated care model, hospice is a program that works. For decades, WV Caring has helped its patients and family’s transition through life-limiting illness. The goal is to provide comprehensive pain and symptom management, emotional and spiritual support while allowing them to spend valuable time together for as long as possible.

To learn more about hospice care, its benefits and when is it time to consider end-of-life care, please continue reading.

hospice care

In our previous blog, What is the Difference Between Hospice and Palliative Care, we discussed what hospice offers:

When a patient is diagnosed with a terminal illness, the goal of hospice care is to provide emotional, spiritual and physical support to them and their family. Patients who choose hospice care must have a prognosis of six months or less and can be provided where the patient resides: at home or in a nursing facility.

Hospice provides comfort, care and to help patients live a quality life for as long as possible. At West Virginia Caring, our staff provides customized care for the patient and family.

Hospice care assists in the following areas:

● A program coordinated to care for the person with a terminal illness.
● Using a team approach involving the patient, their doctor, a hospice nurse, clinical nursing aid (CNA), social worker, chaplain and volunteers.
● Provide symptom management for physical, emotional and spiritual needs.
● Services available on call 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.
● Bereavement support is provided to the family for 12 months following the death of a loved one.
These are covered in under the Medicare Part A benefit, with no out-of-pocket expenses for the patient. Hospice is also covered by Medicaid and other commercial insurances; however, WV Caring provides care for those who do not have insurance and no ability to pay for care.


A frequent question we get asked is, “When is it time to consider hospice care?” As a family member, it can be difficult to recognize the signs that hospice is needed. As the leading hospice provider in West Virginia, it is our duty to help you decide when the time is right.

Five signs that your loved one needs hospice include:

  1. Your loved one has had a sudden decline in their health. Has your loved one started experiencing sleeplessness, breathlessness or fatigue? If these things are happening, it may be time to ask for help.
  2. Your loved one is making frequent trips to the emergency center: Has your loved one been making multiple trips to the hospital in the last few months? Along with your physician we can assess the situation and provide care when the time is right.
  3. Your loved one is losing weight rapidly. Has your loved one lost a large amount of weight in the last few months? A lack of appetite could be their body’s way of telling them that it has a health problem.
  4. Your loved one is experiencing pain that can’t be relieved. If your loved one has been experiencing significant pain that can’t be relieved, it may be time to discuss hospice with their healthcare provider to discuss their options.
  5. Your loved one’s mental and physical function has declined. Has walking, climbing stairs or using a walker/cane gotten more difficult? Lack of mobility can be frustrating.

If these signs resonate with you, it may be time to think about hospice. For decades, we have helped thousands of patients and their family’s transition through life-limiting illnesses. We provide symptom management and emotional and spiritual support.

Our goal is to help our patients spend quality time with their loved ones.

If you have any questions about our hospice services or just want to talk with our care team, give us a call at 1-866-656-9790.