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Home > Hospice
How Stronger Hospice-Physician Education Programs Can Improve End-of-Life Care, ALOS and your Bottom Line
How Stronger Hospice-Physician Education Programs Can Improve End-of-Life Care, ALOS and your Bottom Line
How Stronger Hospice-Physician Education Programs Can Improve End-of-Life Care, ALOS and your Bottom Line
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Despite the growth of patients and their families using hospice care, the average length of stay has been declining. The number of Medicare beneficiaries who receive less than a week of hospice care has been rising sharply.

At the same time, you are beginning to see an increasing emphasis on improving end-of-life care. Physicians are the critical piece of the solution to the concerns of hospice professionals.

From their first day of medical school, physicians are trained to cure and prolong life and focus on combating disease. Problem is the majority of physicians are not referring their terminally ill patients soon enough to hospice to offer patients the care and quality of life that hospice services provides.

Now, "How Stronger Hospice-Physician Education Programs Can Improve End-of-Life Care, ALOS and Your Bottom Line" has been produced by the editorial staff of hospice letter, the nation's first and leading management briefing for hospice executives since 1979.

This practical report gives you:

  • Strategies for developing effective, ongoing programs to strengthen referral programs and ALOS
  • Proven tips and methods for education and referral programs that are working elsewhere
  • Suggestions on building relationships with physicians and other referral sources in your community

End-of-life education for physicians is a vital component for alleviating stress, confusion and guilt by families faced with difficult decisions.

Because reimbursement hinges on timely patient referrals hospices are struggling with less and less reimbursement and shorter lengths of stay.


Discover why more hospices are devoting time, money and resources to physician education programs. How unduly 'optimistic" prognoses - with consequent late referral to hospice - have adverse implications for terminally ill patients.

This new special report looks at the problem of how short lengths of stay hurt patients and their families due to struggling without hospice support services.

Coming to terms with dying, making choices about how to spend their remaining time, preparing their family for loss, are essential benefits of hospice care that may be denied patients because their physicians are unable or unwilling to be honest about their patients' prognosis.

Doctors are "symptomatically optimistic" with hospice referrals, one leading study confirmed.


In this special report for hospice professionals, you'll see why physician education is a major factor in increasing average length of stay. Discover how one Florida hospice revamped its admission criteria allowing patients to be admitted for longer as permitted by state regulation. This hospice is closely monitoring referrals and converts as many as possible to admissions.

The report includes checklist-type information like five ways physicians may improve end-of-life care. Even nurses need more end-of-life education, researchers found. Read about the $2.24 million grant that's supporting end-of-life nursing education as a training project.

See how to get the two most important outsiders in end-of-life care to work together. Get results of a report on how encouraging physicians and clergy to communicate with each other can go


You'll learn the management techniques hospices can use to increase the average length of stay. Like what happened when one hospice hired a fill-time professional relations coordinator whose sole job was to reach out to referral sources.

  • Discover how to forge a relationship with a difficult physician. Like how a Michigan hospice decided to combat the problem of declining lengths of stay by assessing its relations with two local oncologists, and the successful results.
  • Identify ways you can shift physicians' referring patterns to include referrals of non-cancer patients.
  • Find out how a California hospice took this approach and had an upswing in referrals.


Learn how charitable foundations and other organizations are funding and developing educational programs for physicians on end-of-life care. Projects address such key points as education of medical students and young physicians, the textbooks they use, licensing exams, and residency training, all with the goal of improving the quality of life for terminal patients.

See how a Denver hospice increased its admissions/referrals by 30 percent and its referral base by 140 percent through an innovative program that also resulted in a doubling of its managed care contracts.

A North Dakota hospice maintained its average length of stay, doubled its average daily census and increased referrals by focusing its marketing efforts on women 40 to 60 years of age. Targeting this segment of potential referrers has proven to be a successful method for increasing the hospice's LOS.

"How Stronger Hospice-Physician Education Programs Can Improve End-of-Life Care, ALOS and, your Bottom Line" can help get the strategy and planning discussion juices going for your hospice. This special report zeros in on the problem and lays out some bright and innovative solutions.

There is no better time than right now to strengthen your ALOS, continue to improve your hospice's end-of-life care goals for your patients and their families. One new idea, one cemented relationship with a referring physician, will more than pay for the modest price of this special report.

Order your copy today.

Publication Date: April 2002
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Stratifying High-Risk, High-Cost Patients: Benchmarks, Predictive Algorithms and Data Analytics

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