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JourneyCare chosen to participate in Medicare Choices Model

This month, JourneyCare is proud to announce the launch of JourneyCare Choices, a pilot that offers patients facing serious illness the option of receiving select hospice services while simultaneously pursuing curative treatments.

We are one of just three hospice providers in Illinois chosen by the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) for this pioneering program, which is based on the Medicare Care Choices Model, and one of 141 nationally.

CMS will evaluate whether hospice services can improve the quality of life and care received by Medicare patients, increase patient satisfaction, and reduce costs. The program is aimed at patients who are living with advanced cancers, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease and congestive heart failure.

Currently, Medicare and Medicaid patients with these conditions are required to forgo curative care in order to receive hospice services. Fewer than half of them actually use hospice care – and most only for a short period of time.

The JourneyCare Choices will empower clinicians, patients and their families with greater flexibility in deciding between hospice care and curative treatment when faced with life-limiting illness. And it will test whether patients who qualify for Medicare or Medicaid hospice coverage would elect to receive the palliative care services typically provided by JourneyCare if they could continue to seek curative care.

“It’s an honor to be chosen by Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services to be part of the JourneyCare Choices model pilot,” Pam Gertig, JourneyCare Director of Innovative Programs, said. “This will certainly shape the model of hospice and how we deliver care in the future.”


– By Elisabeth Mistretta, JourneyCare Content Specialist
Originally published in Together to Care, Spring 2016

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