“Despite experiencing symptoms for months before the end of their lives, older adults are spending shorter periods of time in hospice.
“The finding suggests there may be a need for more attention to symptoms and disability for these elderly people—and perhaps earlier hospice admission.
“Researchers looked at information from a study of 562 people, aged 70 and older, who were not disabled when the study began but died over the following 16 years.
“Of these individuals, 244 (43.4 percent) were admitted to hospice during the last year of life. They were slightly older and more likely to have cognitive impairments (problems thinking and making decisions) than older adults who weren’t admitted to hospice.”
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