|CMS recently released an updated report on hospice care in tribal communities, LTSS Research: Hospice in Indian Country (PDF, 991 KB, 11 pp). Hospice care helps provide comfort for patients with chronic or terminal illnesses who are nearing the end of life. It is usually offered to patients who are no longer seeking a cure for their illnesses and have life expectancies of 6 months or fewer.
The recent research explored in this 2017 report reaffirms the need to address barriers to compassionate, culturally appropriate hospice care in Indian Country. Specifically, it emphasizes the importance of honoring Native cultural values and traditions as a key step for reducing these barriers.
In line with the 2017 CMS report findings, a guide from the National Institute on Aging, End of Life: Helping with Comfort and Care, discusses the importance of relaying cultural customs to health care providers. The report provides information for caregivers about making health care decisions for people who are nearing the end of life and who may be unable to make their own decisions.