Our speaker today was Carey Dickerson, a volunteer with Hospice of the Valley who has been on their community speakers' bureau for 5 years.
Hospice of the Valley has been in existence since 1977.  It is a non-profit type of hospice - many of the others are for-profit organizations. They have a  larger number of staff with national certification than most hospice providers. 
To be eligible for Hospice Palliative Care programs, the patient and family and doctor have previously agreed to stop trying curative treatments and the doctor has estimated that the patient has less than 6 months to live. Under these conditions, Medicare will pay for hospice palliative care at home that seeks to alleviate painful suffering and to provide for the physical, psychological, social and spiritual needs of the patient and the patient's family. Hospice of the Valley can provide prescription medicines and medical equipment like hospital beds for home use and walkers and wheel chairs.  HOV offers 24/7 telephone support to talk with a live nurse or social worker for advice and directions. 
Another program offered is Arizona Palliative Health Care which is for people with a chronic health care condition but who are expected to live two years or more. It is similar to the 6-month program but it is not paid for by Medicare.  One type of care is for people with Alzheimer's disease. 
How does one get approved for services from Hospice of the Valley?  1. Call them at 602-530-6900 2. Have an informational visit in your home 3. Get your doctor's approval to place you in hospice care.