CMS Role In Advance Care Planning


Hospice and Palliative Care are sensitive and nuanced topics and I’ve blogged on it quite extensively in the past, including here and here.

Under specific circumstances, Hospice could be an important part of advance care planning (ACP).

Thomas Harter, (writing for Provider) reports that currently, Medicare does not offer a paid benefit for advance care planning (ACP). As a result, health care providers who want to assist Medicare enrollees with ACP do so voluntarily and neither they, nor their institutions, are compensated for their time and efforts. This is not only an unfair expectation on individual practitioners or health institutions, it is also medically and ethically unsound. Fortunately, two recent events have the potential to reshape the landscape of advance care planning in the U.S.

Cultural And Policy Evolution In Advance Care Planning

On September 17, 2014, the Institute of Medicine (IOM) published Dying in America: Improving Quality and Honoring Individual Preferences Near the End of Life. The report is built on two basic premises:

  • Despite humankind’s medical advances to lengthen life, death remains the inevitable outcome for all humans, and thus all people have a stake in improving end-of-life care; and
  • Medical advances complicate the dying processes for many people in ways that medical training and health systems in America generally were not designed to address, making them ill equipped to balance complex patient needs in practice.

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