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5 min read

What’s the Diagnosis of the Problem for our Hospice and Palliative Care Movement

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Dr. Ira Byock discusses the current state of the hospice industry and the need for major reforms. He emphasizes the importance of acknowledging leaders' responsibility for the crisis in hospice care and apologizing for failures.  Then, the conversation moves toward solutions.




Dr. Byock suggests that the industry should focus on staffing levels, including adequate nurse-to-patient ratios and staff well-being as quality measures. He also highlights the need for accountability and transparency in hospice programs. Dr. Byock warns against the potential substitution of hospice care by other programs and emphasizes the importance of setting clinical standards to maintain the integrity of true hospice care.


The conversation explores the unique model of hospice care and the challenges of substituting it with modes that are less than. He emphasizes the need for quality end-of-life care and the lack of concern from payers. The discussion also delves into the importance of establishing standards for hospice care and the past failure of associations to do so. The conversation concludes with a call for structural changes in the field and the need to reinvent and improve the delivery of care.

Key Takeaways

  • Hospice care is a unique and impactful model of care that cannot be easily substituted with standardized care.
  • There is a need for quality end-of-life care, but payers often prioritize cost over quality.
  • The field of hospice and palliative care should establish clear standards to differentiate between excellent and mediocre programs.
  • Associations in the field should prioritize the mission and values of the profession over profit-motivated interests.
  • Acknowledging the crisis in the field and making necessary corrections is essential for the survival of the field.

This is a great listen for staff, leaders, and hospice and palliative care organization boards.  Join us; this is timely and relevant.







Our Guest

Dr Ira Byock

Ira Byock



TCNtalks Host

Chris Comeaux

Chris Comeaux
President & CEO
Teleios Collaborative Network

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Quote in podcast

Quote by Dr Ira Byock


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