How Can I Continue Hospice Past My Initial Prognosis?Medicare covers hospice care for two initial 90-day benefit periods, or a total of six months. After this, it will cover an unlimited amount of 60-day (two-month) benefit periods. At the start of each benefit period, your hospice doctor or a related provider must recertify that you have a life expectancy of six months or less.

If you continue hospice past your two initial benefit periods, you are required to have a face-to-face meeting with a hospice doctor or nurse practitioner before the start of each additional 60-day benefit period. Meetings should take place before the end of your current benefit period but no earlier than 30 days before the new benefit period.

You have the right to ask for a review of your case if a hospice provider has declared you no longer eligible for hospice care. This provider is required to give you a notice explaining your right to an expedited appeal. If you do not get this notice, ask for it. Instructions for appealing should be provided on this notice.

You also have the right to change your hospice provider once per benefit period. To change your hospice provider, you must sign a statement naming the new hospice provider you plan to receive care from, your previous hospice provider, and the effective date of the change. This statement must be filed at both hospice agencies.

Read Next: How Can I End The Hospice Benefit?
Learn About: What Does Hospice Care Fraud Look Like, and How Can I Protect Myself From It?
Return to: Medicare In-Depth takes pride in providing you as much information as possible concerning your Medicare options, but only a health insurance broker licensed to sell Medicare can help you compare your plan options from various insurance companies. When you’re ready, we recommend you discuss your needs with a Licensed Sales Agent.

This content was created and copyrighted by the Medicare Rights Center ©2020. Medicare Rights Center is a national, nonprofit consumer service organization that works to ensure access to affordable health care for older adults and people with disabilities. These materials are presented here with support from and may not be distributed, modified or edited without Medicare Rights’ consent.