For patients with incurable cancer, hospice care should begin immediately when cancer therapy is discontinued or opted against. Hospice care works by being proactive, so that means it can only be effective if it starts before you think you need it. It’s like auto insurance – you must have it in place before the accident occurs.

Formal eligibility requirements state that patients should have an approximate life expectancy of six months or less. These estimates sometimes pose a psychological barrier to patients and physicians, who either don’t want to restrict their hopes or worry if they outlive the estimate that they’ll get in trouble. But neither of these things are of real concern. There’s nothing about having a limited life expectancy that prevents you from being pleasantly surprised by living longer. And hospice agencies have a system in place for re-certifying eligibility at the end of six months if you’re still doing well.

Don’t let the average life expectancy requirements prevent you from getting the help you need or limit your hopes of being above average. Because we’ll be right in there hoping with you.