Approximately 42% of U.S. hospices are offering alternative therapies such as massages or pet therapy, which are considered “complementary and alternative” therapies that don't fall under the rubric of standard care.
Almost 72% of American hospices that offer alternative therapies now offer massages, while 69% provide support group therapy and 62% offer music therapy, according to data compiled by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
Researchers point out that while these alternative therapies aren't usually covered by insurance, they significantly contribute to the patient's quality of life while calming their anxieties and improving their moods. The CDC study was published in the National Health Statistics Report .
Hospice care is very mis-understood. It is a field of medicine that has moved from the perspective of dying to the perspective of "living" your last days with a good quality of life and with dignity. Studies have also shown that patents availing themselves of hospice and palliative care, in some cases, actually do live longer than those who do not.
Do your homework in this area especially if a loved one could benefit.