cherry picking …

Charles von Gunten’s comments on the recent JAMA article looking at non-profit & for profit hospice characteristics.

“The for-profit agencies whose shares are traded publicly on the stock exchanges and report large profits do, in fact, ‘‘cherry pick’’ less expensive patients who live longer … Now that the data are out—everyone in the United States should decry these kinds of practices in the setting of end of-life care. Providing palliative care near the end of life should not be the same health care business as competing to provide the face-lift or the tummy tuck, or some other high profit but relatively low-social-value medical care. The care of the dying should embody our highest ideals as a developed society.”

a related NHPCO statement

a recent article in the Journal of Law, Medicine and Ethics “In the Business of Dying: Questioning the Commercialization of Hospice”