With routine care, patients receive hospice services in the setting they call home. Routine care may include pain management, symptom management, emotional and spiritual counseling, nutritional services, and therapeutic services. Routine care is provided wherever a patient calls home – a private home, an assisted living facility, or a long-term care facility. Support in the home includes durable medical equipment, medications and supplies, social services and volunteer visits, spiritual support and bereavement counseling.
According to the National Hospice and Palliative Care Organization, more than 90 percent of hospice care is routine home care, and many patients spend the entirety of their time in hospice care under routine care.
Depending on the patient’s needs, routine care will be intermittent – care teams will set up a care plan to visit on a set schedule but will not remain present at all times. Regularly scheduled visits will be set up to help the patient with pain relief, physical and occupational therapies, and health-aide services. Patients can also receive unscheduled visits when necessary and hospice providers are available to contact around the clock if needed.
Patients and their families may prefer one level of hospice care or feel more comfortable with particular levels of nursing support. The severity of patient symptoms and how often care is needed also play a large role in selecting the most appropriate level of hospice care.