How We Help Physician Practices

As a hospice leader, VITAS brings our services to your patients when they need us most—when curative modalities are no longer positively impacting their quality of life. 

VITAS services are based on delivering excellent care to advanced illness patients: 

  • Specialized care protocols and coordinated care plans based on patient needs
  • Effective pain and symptom management designed to assure patient comfort 
  • Care provided in the most comfortable and appropriate environment
  • Routine physician updates on the patient’s status and condition—customized to fit the needs of each physician
  • VITAS care plans are dependent upon the attending or following physician’s approval and welcome the physician’s input on care

Our staff is committed to optimizing patient care and putting the needs of patients and families first.

Our specialized care teams, including palliative care-trained physicians, certified hospice nurses and hospice aides, are committed to delivering quality patient care.

Our End-of-Life Care Model

VITAS’ innovative model of end-of-life care also is reflected in ongoing, company-conducted research on: 

  • Effective methods of pain control 
  • Proprietary tools and protocols, including a pain formulary, hospice-specific wound care and an electronic patient record 
  • Specialized care programs for diagnoses such as advanced cancer, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, congestive heart failure, kidney disease, liver disease, AIDS, Alzheimer’s and other neurological conditions 
  • Specialized training and formal credentialing of all staff involved in patient care 

Our model of care results in national outcomes that speak for themselves. 

Physicians can partner with VITASMost importantly, VITAS’ clinical leadership and expertise have improved quality of life for patients with advanced illness by providing the most appropriate, customized care plans and effective pain management available today. 

Sophisticated Technology Systems and Tools

With one of the hospice field’s most sophisticated information technology systems, VITAS can customize reports for individual physicians by collecting and sorting data using a variety of metrics. Our information technology resources also allow VITAS to analyze more clinical data on more hospice patients than any other provider. 

Services such as our national Care Connections Centers are available at all times after hours and on weekends and holidays, and our online referral capacity offers immediate benefits with the kind of value that gets reflected in high patient/family satisfaction scores. 

VITAS offers a number of tools that physicians may find helpful in: 

  • Assessing limited life expectancy and hospice eligibility 
  • Breaking bad news to patients and families and initiating a discussion about options for end-of-life care 
  • Determining clinical appropriateness for the inpatient level of hospice care or Intensive Comfort Care® (continuous home care) 
  • Billing for attending physician care plan oversight services provided to Medicare hospice beneficiaries 
  • Comparing VITAS’ hospice services with traditional home healthcare as an option for your patient

Your Responsibility as the Attending Physician

As the attending physician for the patient(s) you refer to VITAS for hospice services, you are an integral member of our interdisciplinary team, which has overall responsibility for managing and providing hospice care to these patients.

To provide hospice care to your patients, VITAS must obtain, at the time a patient is admitted to hospice care, a certification that, based on your clinical expertise, the patient's prognosis is for a life expectancy of six months or less if the terminal illness runs its normal course.

As the attending physician, you are jointly responsible with the VITAS physician and interdisciplinary team for establishing, reviewing and updating your patient's plan of care. You will be consulted regularly regarding your patient's hospice plan of care and are encouraged to participate in VITAS' interdisciplinary team meetings. 

Is your patient ready for hospice?