Hospice is a system of care for patients with a terminal illness who have a life expectancy of six months or less and who choose not to seek (or to discontinue) treatment to cure the illness. The goal of hospice care is to make the patient as comfortable as possible — and to support the patient and family, emotionally and spiritually, — during the final months of life. This care is often provided in the patient’s private residence, but may also be provided in a hospital, assisted living facility, nursing home or specialized inpatient hospice facility.

Hospice care does not provide curative treatment for the terminal condition, but offers palliative care, which gives relief from pain and other symptoms.