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complementary therapy, hospice, palliative care, rural and urban



  1. Running, Alice PhD, RN, APN
  2. Shreffler-Grant, Jean PhD, RN
  3. Andrews, Wendy RN, MSN, FNP


As people live longer with chronic illnesses, the need for hospice services will increase. Complementary therapies have been shown to increase ease, relieve pain, and improve quality of life-all relevant for people with chronic illness at the end of their lives. The first aim of this study was to identify complementary therapy services available to and provided for clients receiving hospice care in Nevada and Montana. The second aim was to identify differences in those therapies for urban and rural hospice clients. Using a descriptive survey design, data were collected from surveys sent to all hospice administrators in Nevada and Montana (N = 54). A 50% (n = 27) response rate was obtained. Most (70.4%, n = 19) of the participating hospices offered complementary therapy; slightly more than half (52.9%, n = 9) provided the services for less than 25% of their clients. No significant differences were found between rural and urban hospices.