What is hospice? Hospice is an insurance benefit available to anyone with a serious illness and life expectancy of less than six months. Hospice care focuses on pain and symptom management but, unlike palliative care, does not include treatment with curative intent. 

Hospice care can be provided at home, at a hospice facility or, in certain instances, in an inpatient hospital bed referred to as a ‘hospice scatter bed.’ Hospice benefits usually do not cover room and board expenses. 

Hospice benefits also extend to certain family members: 

  • Support and counseling through social workers, chaplains and professional grief support team
  • Financial planning and notaries
  • Funeral planning 
  • Connection to support groups
  • Free of charge individual bereavement counseling available for 13 months 

What is a hospice scatter bed? Any hospital bed can be converted into a hospice scatter bed; this takes place when a patient, or their family, elects hospice benefits but the patient is too unstable to transport to home or a hospice facility. Patients will receive hospice care from the existing staff that they’re familiar with and family members will receive the benefits listed above. A hospice vendor will partner with clinical staff and assist in supporting the family for end of life and bereavement care.