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Sharp Hospice Officials Talk About Challenges

Evening Edition

Above: Suzi K Johnson, the vice president of Sharp Hospice, and Dr. Daniel Hoefer, chief medical officer for Sharp Hospice, talk to KPBS about why more people are choosing hospice care and the challenges that growth creates.

Aired 2/5/13 on KPBS Midday Edition.

Guests

Joanne Faryon, KPBS Investigations Producer

Suzi K Johnson, Vice President of Sharp Hospice

Dr. Daniel Hoefer, Chief Medical Officer for Sharp Hospice

Kathleen Pacurar, CEO San Diego Hospice

Transcript

A growing number of people are choosing hospice care - a type of care for people with less than six months to live. More people are also living longer once they enter hospice care. This combination has led to spiraling costs and Medicare audits.

The KPBS/Investigative Newsource team is exploring hospice care in an ongoing series.

Suzi K Johnson, the vice president of Sharp Hospice, told KPBS that hospice is becoming mainstream, which means more physicians are referring it.

"And I think patients and families are asking for it," she said.

Dr. Daniel Hoefer, the chief medical officer for Sharp Hospice, said the traditional health care model does not provide the services hospices do.

"We don't have a good system right now to fill in that gap," he said.

Claire Trageser contributed to this report.

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