Navigating ICD-10 Coding For Hospice Care: A Comprehensive Guide

What is ICD 10 Hospice Care?

ICD 10 Hospice Care is a system used by healthcare providers to classify and code diagnoses, symptoms, and procedures for the purpose of billing and reimbursement. It is the 10th revision of the International Statistical Classification of Diseases and Related Health Problems, published by the World Health Organization (WHO).

Code Information

The ICD 10 code for hospice care is Z51.5. This code is used to indicate that a patient is receiving hospice care for their terminal illness. It is important for healthcare providers to accurately code for hospice care to ensure proper billing and reimbursement.

Diagnostic Related Groups (MS-DRG)

Hospice ICD- Coding - HealthRev Partners
Hospice ICD- Coding – HealthRev Partners

In the MS-DRG system, hospice care is classified under DRG 885 – Long Term Care with Major Procedure. This DRG is used for patients who require long-term care for terminal illnesses and may include major procedures related to their care.

Convert to ICD-9 Code

To convert the ICD 10 code Z51.5 for hospice care to ICD-9, you would use the code V66.7. This code indicates that a patient is receiving hospice care for their terminal illness, similar to the ICD 10 code.

Code History

ICD--CM Diagnosis Reporting for Hospice Providers  Relias Academy
ICD–CM Diagnosis Reporting for Hospice Providers Relias Academy

The ICD coding system has evolved over the years to meet the changing needs of healthcare providers and patients. The transition from ICD-9 to ICD-10 allowed for more specific and detailed coding, including codes for hospice care.

Approximate Synonyms

Some approximate synonyms for hospice care in the ICD 10 system include palliative care, end-of-life care, and comfort care. These terms are often used interchangeably to refer to the specialized care provided to patients with terminal illnesses.

Clinical Information

Hospice care is a specialized type of care for patients with terminal illnesses, focusing on pain management, symptom control, and emotional support. It is provided by a multidisciplinary team of healthcare professionals, including doctors, nurses, social workers, and counselors.

Causes, Symptoms, Diagnosis, and Treatment

The need for hospice care typically arises when a patient has been diagnosed with a terminal illness and has a life expectancy of six months or less. Common causes for hospice care include cancer, heart failure, and chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD).

Patients receiving hospice care may experience a range of symptoms, including pain, fatigue, nausea, and difficulty breathing. These symptoms are managed through medications, therapies, and other supportive measures to improve the patient’s quality of life.

Diagnosis of the need for hospice care is made by a healthcare provider based on the patient’s medical history, physical examination, and prognosis. It is important for patients and their families to have open and honest discussions about their goals and wishes for end-of-life care.

Treatment in hospice care focuses on providing comfort and quality of life for the patient, rather than curing the underlying illness. This may include pain management, symptom control, emotional support, and spiritual care to address the physical, emotional, and spiritual needs of the patient.


In conclusion, ICD 10 hospice care is a vital component of end-of-life care for patients with terminal illnesses. Proper coding and documentation of hospice care are essential for accurate billing and reimbursement for healthcare providers. By understanding the causes, symptoms, diagnosis, and treatment of hospice care, healthcare professionals can provide compassionate and comprehensive care for patients and their families during this difficult time.


1. What is the difference between hospice care and palliative care?
2. How is hospice care funded in the United States?
3. Can a patient receive hospice care at home?
4. How long can a patient receive hospice care?
5. What services are included in hospice care?

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