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NHPCO Reports Growth in Number of Hospice Patients Served, 1.4 Million, With a Wider Range of Illnesses Seen by Providers
Date:11/10/2008

g, pancreas, or prostate. Longer lengths of survival were found in four of the six disease categories studied.

National Hospice/Palliative Care Month

Throughout the month of November, hospice and palliative care organizations across the nation are working to promote awareness, both in the professional healthcare community and among the public. For the 30th year in a row, the White House issued a National Hospice Month proclamation for November (http://www.whitehouse.gov/news/releases/2008/10/20081031-5.html).

"November is an important time of year to reach out and help people understand the benefits of hospice and palliative care. Some people mistakenly think hospice is a place. While there are hospice facilities, hospice is not a place but a model of care created to help people live with dignity, comfort, and compassion at the end of life," said J. Donald Schumacher, NHPCO president and CEO. "Hospice focuses on quality of life and not on a cure."

"Palliative care works to bring this philosophy of care to people earlier in the course of a serious illness," Schumacher noted.

Hospice and palliative care programs provide pain management, symptom control, psychosocial support, and spiritual care to patients and their families. They also serve as valuable community resources about care options.

Additional information about hospice, palliative care, and advance care planning is available from NHPCO's Caring Connections. For information, to find a local hospice, or to get a free state-specific advance directive form, visit http://www.caringinfo.org or call the HelpLine at 800/658-8898.

NHPCO's new Facts and Figures (http://www.nhpco.org/files/public/Statistics_Research/NHPCO_facts-and
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SOURCE National Hospice and Palliative Care Organization
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