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New Hospice Regulations Pass Committee

Legislators hope to to change regulations to allow hospice care to grow in Connecticut.

Bethel, Connecticut lawmakers approved the first step to expand patients’ access to hospice organizations by revamping existing regulations. The bill passed the Public Health Committee unanimously and will now be decided by the House of Representatives.

According to the Associated Press, hospices would be able to provide more inpatient services to their terminal patients than they are currently allowed to. Branford-based thinks the new regulations are problematic and lowers standards. 

“In the new regs, the director of nursing in the facility, does not have to be a nurse," said Dr. Joseph Andrews, according to WTNH. "In the old regs the nurse has to be a hospice trained and experienced in order to direct nursing." 

The National Association for Home Care & Hospice says the home care industry totaled $72.2 billion dollars in the United States in 2010.  The group credits the 1965 passage of Medicare for the elderly with a boon in the industry. In two decades beginning in 1967, the number of certified agencies grew from 1,753 to 5,983 until leveling off.

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