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Leaving hospice prematurely may hike health expenses

Terminally ill cancer patients who choose to leave a hospice center incur significantly greater health-care costs than patients who remain in hospice care until death, new research shows.

Former hospice residents incur expenses almost five times that of hospice patients, in part because of their greater use of emergency rooms (ERs) and more frequent hospitalizations, according to a study reported in the Oct. 1 issue of the Journal of Clinical Oncology.

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