A Guide to Informed Hospice Decision-Making

Salus Hospice is proud to have earned a four-star rating from Medicare’s Hospice Compare. The ranking is based on the quality of hospice patient care, timely initiation of care, hospice team communication, and consideration of patients’ beliefs and values.

Salus is one of only three Orange County hospice care providers who earned this rating. We are the only provider in San Diego County with a four-star rating. Salus is among a select few hospice providers in Los Angeles County and Riverside County to have earned this rating.  

Debbie Robson, RN, BSN, MBA-HCM, Administrator and Vice President of Salus Hospice states, “Salus is very proud of our four-star rating because of what this rating symbolizes ~ Quality patient care as perceived by those we have had the privilege of serving. Our mission is to provide the most nurturing hospice care with services uniquely caring for the patient’s physical, social and spiritual well-being. This rating is a quality measure that helps us determine how well we meet our goal.”  

We would like to explain more about the tool, how to use it and what this star rating means. 

Medicare’s Hospice Compare


As we age or experience significant health problems, hospice care becomes crucial. It provides comfort, pain relief, and support during the final stages of life. Medicare’s Hospice Compare is a helpful online tool for families and patients. The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) created the tool to provide important information for patients needing end-of-life care. Its goal is to improve healthcare quality and help families make better decisions about hospice care with comprehensive information about hospice providers.

What Information Does Hospice Compare Provide?

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Hospice Compare measures patient care quality, timely care initiation, team communication, and respect for patients’ beliefs and values. These measurements provide a holistic view of each provider and help families decide which is best for them based on their needs.

How Do I Use Hospice Compare?

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Visit the official CMS website or search “Medicare’s Hospice Compare.” Then, type in a location to find hospice providers in the area where your loved ones will receive care. Another option is to conduct searches for specific hospice agencies. This is helpful when healthcare providers suggest a hospice care provider or when family and friends recommend one.  

Users can compare up to three hospice companies simultaneously, evaluating them on various quality measures. The overall star rating, as determined by patient and family surveys, is available for all providers for consideration or comparison. Further, the quality measures break down information by family care experience and quality of patient care. Each part includes measures from the patient and family caregiver’s perspective regarding managing pain, respecting patients, offering emotional and spiritual help, and more while receiving hospice care from the provider. 

Other Tools for Choosing a Hospice Provider


Read Reviews and Seek Recommendations

In addition to reviewing Hospice Compare, families can ask friends, family or healthcare professionals for recommendations. Reading Google reviews and patient/family testimonials is also helpful. 


Verify accreditation from reputable organizations such as The Joint Commission.  This ensures the hospice care provider continuously meets or exceeds the highest standards of care.

Contact Hospice Care Providers

Contact the hospice care provider directly. This is your opportunity to ask questions and schedule an assessment for your loved one. During the assessment, plan to discuss care specifics, goals, and the care plan.

Medicare’s Hospice Compare is a valuable resource for informed decision-making and those seeking hospice care. The tool provides transparent information and empowers patients and caregivers to make well-informed decisions during challenging times. 

Salus Hospice is a Joint Commission accredited hospice care provider, highly rated by patients and families and rated four stars by Medicare Hospice Compare. We are here to help if your loved one has received a diagnosis of a terminal health condition. Contact us anytime to learn more about our continuum of care and hospice care program.