Referral Process for Hospice

Anyone can contact Hospicare to begin the referral process; the referral does not have to begin with a physician. When you contact Hospicare, someone from our staff will respond as soon as possible to give you the information you need, answer questions, and schedule an initial visit if desired.

To begin the process, call our admissions staff at 607-272-0212.

It is better to err on the side of early referral. Our staff can be most helpful when we have sufficient time to build a trusting relationship with patients and their caregiver(s) before the situation becomes critical. Hospicare’s on-call nurse availability averts unnecessary trips to the emergency room and alleviates patient and caregiver anxiety and fears.

If, after starting the referral process or becoming a Hospicare patient, you decide hospice isn’t the right approach for you at the moment or that you’d like to pursue treatment aimed at curing your disease, you can sign off hospice services. Just let us know. You can call us back and start the referral process again when you’re ready.

Commonly Asked Questions

Below are answers to some the most commonly asked questions. It’s never to early to call us and ask questions! 607-272-0212

If you’re an individual with serious illness

If you have a terminal or serious illness and have decided to focus on your comfort and quality of life, you can give us a call. If you’d like to know more, learn about the next steps to begin hospice and what to expect from Hospicare.

What to expect on your first visit

A member of our staff will come to you, wherever you live, to meet with you and your family members to:

  • Explain Hospicare’s services and answer questions
  • Determine goals for you and your family and current concerns related to your care and the disease process
  • Assess your eligibility for palliative or hospice care
  • Provide information about Durable Power of Attorney for Health Care and Advance Care Planning. You are not required to have an advance directive to receive care.

If you meet eligibility guidelines, you will be admitted as soon as possible after we receive approval from your primary care physician and our medical director.

If you’re a family member or close friend

If you want to approach the subject of hospice one-on-one with your loved one, choose a quiet, comfortable place without distractions in which to do it. Choose your first words carefully. You might try something like “I want to talk with you about your illness. There may be a time when we may need to focus on your comfort instead of a cure, and I’d like to discuss the options with you.” Or, “Your last stay in the hospital seemed hard on you; I think there’s a way to avoid that in the future.”

If you are a physician or other healthcare provider

In determining prognosis, it should be the physician’s judgment that the patient’s life expectancy is 6 months or less. In practice it can be difficult to accurately predict life expectancy. Feel free to contact us if you have any questions or would like our help in assessing appropriateness for hospice services.