At Winterhaven Hospice, veterans are one of the incredibly special groups of
individuals whom we have the honor to serve. In our eyes, the men and women who
have bravely served our country and their families who sacrificed so much to support
them deserve to live out their days without worrying about end of life care. Our goal is to
provide hospice care that will help them live comfortably, with dignity and proper care
until their final day. Providing veterans with high quality, patient focused hospice care is
one way that we can give thanks.
Today, the percentage of individuals who volunteer to serve our country is small, less
than 1%. Fifty plus years ago, during World War II or the wars in Korea and Vietnam,
this wasn’t the case. A much higher percentage of young individuals were drafted into or
volunteered for the military. Those veterans are now entering an age group where they
may require end of life or hospice care, making the need for high quality hospice
providers more important than ever.
Understanding what exactly hospice care is can help you to determine if you or a loved
one qualify. Hospice care is reserved for individuals who are in their final months of life.
It is a way for individuals with terminal illness to continue having their needs met even
when a cure is not feasible. A team of experts provide comprehensive medical care,
pain management, comfort measures, and emotional and spiritual support to make sure
that the individual in care can live and pass away on their terms, even in the face of
As a veteran, hospice care is included in the VA’s standard medical care benefits
package. There are three criteria that veterans must meet in order to qualify for hospice
care. The three hospice criteria for veterans include:
1. A medical diagnosis of a life-limiting disease or illness
2. Treatments or care plan goals that provide comfort rather than a cure
3. A doctor’s assessment that life expectancy is 6 months or less if the disease runs
its usual course
If hospice care is provided to a veteran at a VA hospital or at an organization that has a
contract with the VA, no copay is required. This can help to alleviate some of the stress
for family and friends who wish to provide the best possible care to their loved one. The
hospice experts at the VA and at the organizations who partner with the VA are well
versed in providing individualized, expert care and can help navigate any questions or
concerns you may have. An additional benefit of hospice care for veterans is that it can
be provided in the comfort of their own home, or in an inpatient or outpatient setting.
This allows for flexibility and maximal comfort depending on the living situation of each
individual and their family.
Hospice care can completely transform an individual’s end of life experience and can
help to make the difficult transition for one’s family as smooth as possible. BrightSpring
Health Services is determined to ensure that every veteran has the opportunity to live
and die with dignity. Our mission is to offer support to you and your family in whatever way you need.