The following list provides links to valuable materials and helpful best practice reports and articles. We will update and add resources on a continuing basis.
The Standards and Best Practices Committee was appointed by the Board in 2002 and charged with “providing opportunities for examining standards, competencies and making recommendations to members that will improve end of life care.” The Committee surveyed hospices in Fall 2002 regarding their needs for “best practices” and current admitting practices. 21 out of 41 surveys were returned for a response rate of 51%. The Committee analyzed the survey data and has prepared the following information for each of the admitting practices: (...more)
This LCD describes guidelines to be used by National Government Services (NGS) in reviewing hospice claims and by hospice providers to determine eligibility of beneficiaries for hospice benefits. Although guidelines applicable to certain disease categories are included, this LCD is applicable to all hospice patients. It is intended to be used to identify any Medicare beneficiary whose current clinical status and anticipated progression of disease is more likely than not to result in a life expectancy of six months or less. (...more)
In Fall, 2007, the Federation’s Board of Directors charged JoAnne Nowak, MD, Partners Hospice with chairing a task force to review, revise and update a Best Practice report on the General Inpatient Level of Care published in 2004. This report summarizes the recommendations of the Task Force assigned to develop the Best Practice paper on the General Inpatient Level of Care.
This report was accepted by the Federation’s Board of Directors on June 25, 2008.(...more)
Interdisciplinary Team Meeting
Promoting increased effectiveness of the IDT team meeting among Massachusetts Hospices
This report is a Best Practice paper of the Hospice & Palliative Care Federation of MA. It presents the findings of field and survey research on the status of interdisciplinary team (IDT) meetings among Massachusetts hospices and offers recommendations on how to improve the effectiveness of the ODT meeting. It concludes that the purpose of the team meeting is to develop an interdisciplinary Plan of Care that meets the evolving needs and goals expressed by the patient and family. The reports includes content from an educational conference held in April, 2004 that supports the implementation of a model of careplanning focused on patient and family goals rather than a disease-based model. (...more)
Palliative Sedation is the monitored use of medications (sedatives, barbiturates, neuroleptics, hypnotics, benzodiazepines or anesthetic medication) to relieve refractory and unendurable physical, spiritual, and/or psychosocial distress for patients with a terminal diagnosis, by inducing varied degrees of unconsciousness. The purpose of the medication(s) is to provide comfort and relieve suffering and not to hasten death. (...more)
The purpose of this document is to establish the procedure for the registered nurse or nurse practitioner to follow when pronouncing a hospice patient’s death at home or in a skilled nursing facility. This document is a sample policy only and is intended to provide general guidance. It is specifically understood that this document is not intended to provide legal, technical or other professional services or advice. Additionally, while this policy may be consistent with the laws of the Commonwealth of Massachusetts, it is not intended to interpret the laws of Massachusetts or any other state. (...more)
This Task Force was established in October, 2000 after interested members of the Federation had met with representatives of Harvard Pilgrim Health Care to discuss ways in which their patients on ventilator support at home could benefit from hospice services. This was a need that had been expressed earlier by staff of the Palliative Care Services at MGH. (...more)
Over the past 18 months, 23 of the Federation’s hospice members participated in a Quality Initiative with Masspro, the CMS contracted Quality Improvement Organization program for Massachusetts. This pilot focused on improving the management of terminal delirium among hospice patients. However, the project provided education, consultation, and peer support to lead the hospices through a QAPI model that can be used for any future improvement project at their programs. (...more)
Tool Kit includes:
Tool Kit Cover Letter
Terminal Delirium Definition
The Hospice & Palliative Care Federation, in collaboration with the MA Council for Home Care Aide Servcies, has produced this report to support compliance with the new Medicare Hospice Conditions of Participation related to the supervision and training of home care and hospice aides. Included are a crosswalk of Medicare regulations for hospice and home health, basic and in-service training curricula, Surveyor Guidelines, and other useful resources. (...more)