Objective—This report presents national estimates on the provision and use
of complementary and alternative therapies (CAT) in hospice. Comparisons of
organizational characteristics of hospice care providers are presented by whether
the provider offered CAT. Comparisons of selected characteristics of patients
discharged from hospice are presented by whether they received care from a
provider that offered CAT, and whether they received a CAT service.
Methods—Estimates are based on data from the 2007 National Home and
Hospice Care Survey (NHHCS), conducted by the Centers for Disease Control
and Prevention’s National Center for Health Statistics.
Results—In 2007, 41.8% of hospice care providers offered CAT services,
had a CAT provider on staff or under contract, or both. Among hospice care
providers offering CAT, over one-half offered massage (71.7%), supportive group
therapy (69.0%), music therapy (62.2%), pet therapy (58.6%), or guided imagery
or relaxation (52.7%). Of the hospice care providers that offered CAT, 21.5% had
at least one discharged hospice patient who received CAT during hospice care.
Overall, 4.9% of all discharged hospice patients received at least one CAT from
the hospice care provider. Over one-half of discharged patients (56.5%) received
care from a provider that offered CAT, and of those, 8.6% received at least one
CAT from the hospice care provider during their stays. There were no differences
in demographics, health, functional status, or admission diagnoses between
patients discharged from hospice either by whether they received care from a
provider that offered CAT or whether they received CAT