Comparing Care Models: Hospice versus Home Health Services

In times of illness, families often find themselves navigating through various options to provide the best possible support and comfort for their loved ones. Two common forms that aim to enhance the well-being of people in the comfort of their homes are hospice care and home health care. While there are similarities between these types of care, they serve distinct purposes and cater to different stages of illness.


Hospice Care. Hospice care is focused on providing comfort and support to patients who have an advanced, severe illness and are in the final stage of their life. The primary goal of hospice care is to enhance the quality of life for patients and their families by managing symptoms and providing emotional and spiritual support during the end-of-life process.

Home Health Care. Home health care is provided to individuals who are recovering from illness, injury or surgery or who have a chronic condition that requires ongoing medical attention. The goal of home health care is to help patients regain independence and improve their overall health and functioning.


Hospice Care. Patients are typically eligible for hospice care if they have a life expectancy of six months or less, as certified by a physician. They must also agree to forego curative treatments in favor of hospice care.

 Home Health Care. Eligibility for home health care is based on the individual’s medical needs and ability to safely receive care at home.


Hospice Care. Hospice care focuses on providing comprehensive comfort care, including pain management, symptom control, emotional support and assistance with activities of daily living. This may include nursing care, medication management, spiritual counseling and bereavement support for the patient and their family.

Home Health Care. Home health care services are more medically oriented and may include skilled nursing care, physical therapy, occupational therapy, speech therapy, wound care, medication management and monitoring of vital signs. The goal is to help patients recover or manage their condition in the comfort of their own home.


Hospice Care. Hospice care is typically provided during the final months of a patient’s life, with a focus on ensuring comfort and dignity during the end-of-life process. The duration of hospice care varies depending on the patient’s condition and needs.

Home Health Care. Home health care may be provided for a shorter duration, such as following surgery or during a period of illness or injury recovery, or it may be ongoing for patients with chronic conditions who require long-term medical support at home.


Hospice Care. Hospice care is provided by a multidisciplinary team that includes a physician, nurses, social worker, spiritual counselor, home health aide and volunteers who collaborate to provide comprehensive care tailored to the patient’s needs and preferences.

Home Health Care. Home health care is provided by professionals skilled in medical care and rehabilitation services, focused on helping patients regain independence and improve their overall health and functioning.

While both hospice care and home health care provide valuable support to patients, hospice care is specifically tailored to individuals with a life-limiting illness. If you have questions about which type of care is right for you, The Elizabeth Hospice is here to help. A staff member is available 24 hours a day, seven days a week. Call 800-797-2050.