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KPBS Midday Edition

Sharp Hospice Officials Talk About Challenges

More People Choosing Hospice Care
When Does End Of Life Begin: Hospice Under Scrutiny
GuestsJoanne 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

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.

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"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.

Corrected: June 14, 2024 at 4:20 AM PDT
Claire Trageser contributed to this report.