Admission Process 

Admission into a hospice program is a matter of choice. Individuals and families considering hospice care often have many questions. Here are answers to a few, but please call us at (716) 439-4417 if you wish to speak to a hospice professional.

Refer now to Niagara Hospice.


Who qualifies for hospice care?

Niagara Hospice provides care to Niagara County residents whose prognosis is approximately six months or less, if the illness runs its normal course, regardless of diagnosis. If curative treatment is no longer effective and you desire a treatment plan based on comfort measures, hospice care may be appropriate for you.

Who can make a referral?

Anyone can call the Hospice office at (716) 439-4417 to obtain information or to make a referral for hospice care. If you or a family member call, we will ask your permission to contact your primary physician to verify that Hospice may be appropriate for you and to request medical information regarding your illness.

Make a referral  to Niagara Hospice.

What happens once a referral is made?   

When a referral is made, a Hospice representative will gather basic information from the individual by phone, and then offer a home visit by an intake representative to fully explain the hospice program. With their consent, Niagara Hospice will contact their physician to obtain medical information and to update their physician on the referral. This is all done free of charge and with no obligation.

If a person is found to be appropriate for hospice care after the initial confidential consultation, a physician order is requested for admission into the program. If you think Hospice may be right for you or a loved one, simply call (716) 439-4417 and Hospice will do the rest.

When should I call Hospice?

If you have been diagnosed with a potentially life-threatening illness, it's time to find out about hospice services so an informed decision can be made regarding your choices. You can ask your physician about hospice care or call us at (716) 439-4417.

Early hospice referral enables the hospice team to provide support to patients and primary caregivers at the earliest  that guidelines permit. As disease progression occurs, your goals can be met and issues that might arise can be addressed immediately.


What about payment?

Most health insurers, including Medicare, Medicaid, and the Veteran's Administration (VA) have hospice coverage. No one is denied hospice care due to ability to pay. Care for patients without insurance or with limited insurance is paid for privately and can be based on a sliding fee scale. The Niagara Hospice Alliance also raises funds to help off-set costs of the under-insured and to support the mission of Niagara Hospice.

Payment for hospice services not provided in the patient's home
Niagara Hospice maintains service care contracts with many hospitals, nursing homes, intermediate care facilities and adult care facilities. While the services of Niagara Hospice typically involve no expense to the patient, each contract provider may charge fees associated with room and board and/or services provided for care of the patient's unrelated terminal diagnosis. Each contract and setting is unique. Medicare and Medicaid regulations prevent hospice providers from providing care in non-contracted facilities.


Patients considering hospice care should ask their respective insurance carriers about the impact of accessing hospice either through Medicare and Medicaid, or through private insurance. Each carrier may have limitations of care and/or out-of-pocket expenses. Niagara Hospice personnel will make every effort to ensure all patients are fully informed about their options prior to making a decision about hospice care.