Hospice Care Vs. Palliative Care: A Basic Guide

old people on a lawn

The realm of at-home care has expanded over the years, paving the way for an assortment of effective treatments that cover all sorts of different needs and longstanding concerns. 

Whether it’s in the context of hospice care or round-the-clock medication maintenance measures, the list of different ways that the quality of life that a handicapped individual has continued to grow without fail. If you’re seeking help for your elderly loved one—be it a parent, grandparent, or close relative—then there’s no better time to do so than today because of all the available options you can choose from! 

Although the world of at-home care continues to expand in an assortment of ways to improve their services, some advancements are more noticeable than others. Among the different kinds of available updates that you should invest in for yourself or a loved one, there are two that stand out: hospice & palliative social care work. 

What are they—and what’s the difference?

They may sound like the same thing at first—but it’s worth noting that both hospice and palliative care are completely different from one another! It’s important to know both of them in further detail to fully understand how these help you.

Hospice care, for starters, is a type of treatment method or service that revolves around the process of caring for patients who are suffering from an acute terminal illness. Often, these illnesses have progressed to the point that they have fewer than six months to live, entailing the need for round-the-clock care in the process. 

Palliative care, on the other hand, is a medical treatment that does not seek to cure a disease but helps all kinds of patients manage the symptoms of their condition that are otherwise too difficult to handle on their own. In terms of classifications, this type of service is a sub-service under the general realm of hospice care. It also applies to patients who are not suffering from terminal illnesses and those who require non-curative remedies for painful or debilitating symptoms! 

What do workers for both types of services do?

Although there is a stark distinction between hospice and palliative care, it’s important to understand that they both interact, in a sense where they generally use and follow similar processes and methods. 

Let’s go over the different kinds of tasks that hospice and palliative care social workers carry out in further detail: 

Psychosocial assessments

For starters, both hospice and palliative care social workers conduct assessments of clients and their families in order to determine their psychological, social, emotional, and spiritual needs. Such assessments are especially fundamental to the working processes of both types of professionals in their respective services as the information generated allows them to develop effective and compassionate care plans! 

Patient education

To ensure that patients under their care have the best chances of adapting or recovering possible, both palliative care and hospice social workers carry out processes of patient education throughout their service.

When we talk about patient education, we’re referring to the stage wherein social workers help clients and their families understand their treatment plan and the processes involved. Additionally, these professionals also help clients and their families navigate relevant resources and assistance available to them by connecting them with local entities—such as cancer or terminal illness support groups and pro-bono counseling services!

Care coordination

Best defined as the delivery of effective medical, psychological, and/or social care through the organization of care providers, the process of care coordination is something both hospice and palliative experts provide. By using their knowledge of systems of care and support within medical settings, workers—such as Bridge Home Health & Hospice’s experts—often act as the point of contact between different care providers for the consolidation of an effective solution! 


While they may sound rather similar at first glance, both hospice care and palliative care are two completely different entities that are responsible for administering top-quality work for patients in need. By understanding the differences that exist between both services in further detail, you’ll be able to best determine which particular kind of option best suits your needs so that you enlist the help of the right services in the long run! 

Bridge Home Health & Hospice provides senior health services in California, ranging from hospice care to adult health care services. Get in touch with us today to learn more about how we can help provide the best level of care and attention for your elderly loved one!