Your Care Team


A hospice care team is a group of specially trained healthcare professionals who ensure that a hospice patient’s last few months, weeks, or days are lived in comfort and dignity.

The members of this interdisciplinary team include a Physician, Nurse, Hospice Aide, Social Worker, Chaplain, Volunteer, and Bereavement Coordinator.  

  • Physicians: The patient’s primary care physician (PCP) and hospice physician or medical director oversee the patient’s care. The PCP provides the initial order for hospice care, the PCP and/or the hospice physician provides the admission order for hospice care and the hospice physician in collaboration with the PCP certifies that the patient has a terminal illness. The hospice physician has a distinct responsibility for the plan of care beyond providing medical advice to hospice staff during the interdisciplinary group (IDG) meetings. The hospice physician also has a responsibility to collaborate with the patient’s PCP as needed to maintain an effective plan of care. In instances where the patient does not have a PCP, the hospice physician can serve in both roles. Medicare allows and reimburses for a one-time visit by a physician who is either the medical director or employee of a hospice agency to evaluate the need for pain and symptom management, counsel the individual regarding hospice and other care options, and advise the individual regarding advanced care planning.


  • Nurses: Hospice nurses are responsible for the initial assessment of the patient to determine eligibility in collaboration with the patient’s PCP (if any) and/or hospice physician and establish the initial plan of care. Following the admission, hospice nurses visit the patient’s home or another setting to educate patients, families, and caregivers on recognizing potential symptoms and providing safe and competent care for the patient. They offer emotional and practical support for both the patient and their family or caregivers. They are also responsible for the coordination of the hospice 

       interdisciplinary care team.


  • Hospice Aides: Hospice Aides provide hands-on personal care such as 

       bathing, dressing, eating, assistance with ambulation exercises, assistance

       with self- administered medications, and performing simple procedures as an

       extension of therapy or nursing services.


  • Social Workers: Hospice Social Workers advocate for each patient’s end-of-life wishes and help individuals address the emotional aspects of late-stage illnesses. Hospice social workers also assist families in identifying other available local services and resources for additional support.


  • Chaplains/Bereavement: Counselors: Hospice Chaplains/Bereavement   Counselor’s primary responsibility is to provide emotional and spiritual counseling to patients and their families. They do not replace clergy members, nor actively promote any particular religion, but rather are there to offer further support and communicate the needs of the patient while supporting the patient’s personal beliefs. Additionally, they provide bereavement services, including phone calls, visits, and memorial services to family members upon the death of a patient.


  • Volunteers: Hospice Volunteers are led by a Volunteer Coordinator and offer a variety of services depending on a patient’s needs, from providing company or respite for caregivers to helping with transportation or other practical needs.


  • Therapists: Physical, speech and occupational therapists provide therapy if needed.


  • Dietitians: Dietitians perform nutritional assessments to formulate and monitor nutritional support plans if needed.

Hospice Team.JPG