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Hospice Eligibility Criteria.

In order to begin hospice care, patients must meet the hospice eligibility requirements established by the U.S. Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services. While no specific number of symptoms is required when qualifying for hospice, these guidelines can help determine if a patient’s condition is or will soon be appropriate for hospice care.

Hospice eligibility requirements:

  • Patient has been diagnosed with a life-limiting condition with a prognosis of six months or less if their disease runs its normal course.
  • Frequent hospitalizations in the past six months.
  • Progressive weight loss (taking into consideration edema weight).
  • Increasing weakness, fatigue, and somnolence.
  • A change in cognitive and functional abilities.
  • Compromised Activities of Daily Living (ADLs) such as eating, bathing, dressing, toileting, transferring/walking, and continence.
  • Deteriorating mental abilities.
  • Recurrent Infections.
  • Skin breakdown.
  • Specific decline in condition.


Disease-specific hospice eligibility criteria.

There are also specific hospice eligibility criteria to consider based on the patient’s primary diagnosis.

Disease-specific requirements for hospice care:

Financial requirements for hospice are:


Please note:
Co-morbidities, the presence of two or more chronic diseases or conditions at the same time, are also a factor to consider in qualifying for hospice.

If you have any doubt about whether the requirements for hospice care have been met, please contact us at 1-888-564-3405 for a hospice consultation.