Nursing homes generally take in patients that were either receiving at-home care, using an assisted living service, or living on their own. Patients end up in nursing homes when their physical and mental health is deteriorating to the point of needing consistent medical observation and care.
However, unlike hospices, which focuses specifically on patients with life expectancies of six months or less, nursing homes do not require their patients to be terminal.
Hospice is Better for End-of-Life Care
A hospice is generally considered the better option for patients suffering from a terminal illness. This is because hospice care places a much greater emphasis on the management of pain and discomfort that may result from the patient’s illness.
Nursing homes generally do not provide hospice care services, as they require additional specialized staff that most nursing homes do not have.
Both nursing homes and hospice care require the patient to be certified by a doctor who has assessed that the specific type of care is necessary for the patient.