When it comes to navigating the journey of terminal illness, understanding the various levels of hospice care can provide both comfort and clarity. Hospice care is designed to offer support and symptom management for patients facing life-limiting illnesses. It encompasses a range of services tailored to meet the changing needs of patients and their families, divided into four distinct levels: Routine Home Care, Continuous Home Care, Inpatient Respite Care, and General Inpatient Care.

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Level 1: Routine Home Care

Routine Home Care (RHC) is the most common level of hospice care. It includes medical, psychological, and spiritual support provided at the patient’s home, whether that be a private residence or a nursing home. The goal of RHC is to manage symptoms, provide comfort, and enhance the quality of life while allowing the patient to remain in a familiar environment.

Level 2: Continuous Home Care

Continuous Home Care (CHC) is provided when a patient has acute symptoms that require close monitoring and care. CHC involves nurses or other healthcare professionals being present in the patient’s home for an extended period, usually during a crisis, to manage symptoms and provide immediate relief.

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Level 3: Inpatient Respite Care

Inpatient Respite Care provides temporary relief for caregivers, offering them a much-needed break. During this period, the patient is transferred to a hospice facility or hospital for up to five days, where they receive professional care and supervision, allowing caregivers to rest and recharge.

Level 4: General Inpatient Care

General Inpatient Care (GIC) is for patients experiencing severe symptoms that cannot be managed at home. Patients are admitted to a hospital, hospice facility, or nursing home where they receive round-the-clock care and symptom management until their condition stabilizes.


Understanding these four levels of hospice care can help patients and families make informed decisions about end-of-life care. Each level is designed to offer the most appropriate care based on the patient’s current condition and needs, ensuring comfort, dignity, and peace throughout the final stages of life.

For more information about hospice care, or to discuss the most suitable level of care for your loved one, reach out to our compassionate and knowledgeable team today.

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