I am a fellowship trained and board certified hospice and palliative medicine physician. I practice both hospice and palliative care and I love teaching nursing and medical students as well as residents. I am a medical director of a hospice and see about 30-40 patients a month in their homes, skilled nursing facilities and extended care facilities for the elderly. I’m also a medical director of a palliative care program in a hospital and my team does about 30-40 inpatient consults. I started this blog to share some of my patient experiences, vent my emotional stress and share some insight from a hospice and palliative care point of view. Some blog entries will be emotionally uplifting, some will be more factual and some will even be mildly cynical. Hopefully this blog will help others in coping with this difficult, challenging but yet very rewarding field. Please make any recommendations, thanks for reading.



17 thoughts on “Biography

  1. Hi, is currently in the progress of choosing blogs to receive recognition from as Top Blogs. This award is not meant to be anything other than a recongnition that your blog gives information about tactics that directly or in directly raise health awareness and prevent the transmition of Disease. Simply place the award banner code on your site and your blog will be listed as a Top Blog on is a Private Global Health Watch Group. Whose goal is to promote healthy living though the spread of information globally. Thank you for your dedication to your blog.
    Please contact me back for the award banner and to make sure that you got the personal email.

    Thank you,
    Natasha Alison.

  2. Dear hospice physician,

    I am both a hospice volunteer and independent caregiver and have enjoyed your insights and discussions.

    I recently started a website called

    A Good Dying:
    Normalizing and Personalizing
    Experiences at the End of Life

    and am looking for places to let people who are wanting more information on dying know that there is this resource.

    Do you have any suggestions?

    I also have a blog on my site:

    at this point mostly personal stories about death and dying.

    Thank you for your time
    Ulla Mentzel

  3. Dear hospicephysician,

    The latest material our team has created are online learning modules related to palliative care at this URL I would appreciate any feedback regarding our material and use of technology. If you have immediate questions please let me know and I look forward to hearing from you.


  4. Dear hospise MD,
    I’m double boarded in adult and child psychiatry and am exploring the option of doing a fellowship in palliative care medicine. I am wondering what the salary is for palliative care docs?
    hope you can help me out…

    • The salary can vary but you can expect it to be competitive. Salary will vary depending on what you do exactly as a palliative care physician. For example, will you do hospice, inpatient palliative care, outpatient palliative care, home palliative care, will you still have your own practice in your specialty or will you have a combination of the above. I would say you could make from 150K to 250K per year depending on the above information. I hope this helps.

  5. The world needs to hear from more like you. Keep up the good work with this blog. I’ve started a blog to help folks approach the death and dying topic well in advance of a crisis situation. If you get a chance, I’d appreciate your opinion on my unique approach.
    Keep writing!

  6. Thank you for the good work you go and the gift you give to so many families. I wanted to let you know about my mom, Stephanie Waxman, and her book, A Helping Handbook–When a Loved One Is Critically Ill. It is a FREE resource for caregivers, patients and families facing terminal illness. My mother wrote and self-published this handbook after her father died. Kaiser ended up purchasing 1000 copies of this unique workbook. That was ten years ago and now, I am helping my mother to spread the word about this book to help as many people as possible. There is a free download of the book on her website, as well as a link to Amazon. I hope you will check it out and be in touch.

    This valuable tool helps family members sort out feelings too difficult to share with others, but writing them down brings understanding and healing.
    Les Zendle, M.D., Assoc. Medical Director, Kaiser Permanente Medical Group

  7. I am looking for a physician to contribute a blog that we will feature on our website, . I came across your blog and wanted to see if you would be interested?

  8. Hi there hospicephysician,

    I just recently stumbled upon your blog (as in, earlier this morning), and haven’t had a lot of time to explore it yet, so sorry if this is an often-repeated question. I was wondering if you could help me understand what the various educational routes are to becoming a hospice physician? And what are the different “flavors” of palliative care? I am a medical student in M1, and I have long been interested in this field (my mom was a hospice nurse when I was growing up, and I’ve always thought it was a wonderful program), but I don’t quite know the paths to get there. I’d love to hear your thoughts.

    Thanks, and I’m excited to have found this blog!

    • Rachel, thank you for your kind note and inquiry. Hospice and Palliative Medicine is a passion of mine and I wouldn’t mind answering as many questions as you have about the specialty and the different intricacies involved. In fact, it would be an honor for me to do so. Please email me at and I’ll give you a more personal and direct email in which to contact me. Good luck and I look forward to assisting any way I can.

  9. I am a VP at one of the largest Hospices in the SE. I am looking at ways we can better on-board our Medical Directors… I would love to hear your thoughts and what has been helpful for you in the past.

  10. Dear HospicePhysican,

    Like Rachel, I was wondering about the different educational routes to becoming a Hospice and Palliative Care Physician. Maybe you could write up a blogpost for under grads and medical students. 🙂

    Thanks for serving!

  11. Dear Hospice Physician,

    Thank you so much for your blog. My career path has been a hospice physician for two years now and I have just started my first year in college. As I am going through my undergraduate education, of course I am having the worry that maybe I won’t be accepted in medical school, maybe I can’t get accepted to a hospice fellowship, and so on. I was just wondering about your path towards becoming a hospice physician and how you found that road to be emotionally, mentally, and how you overcame obstacles. Also, since hospice is a very specialized field, I was also wondering if you could share your thoughts on how the physician role and the nursing role differ in hospice as well as any insight you may have on hospice physicians with differing degrees (i.e. MD, DO) and how they may treat differently in the hospice field. Due to my own concerns of the medical school road and if it is really for me, I have thought of becoming a hospice nurse, because I sincerely cannot imagine not being in the hospice field. Your blog truly inspires me and reinforces my ambition to be a hospice physician and I cannot wait to read more. Thank you so much!

    • Stephanie,
      Thank you for your question. I am going to answer your questions in a blog post. I’d love to help you in your career path since Hospice and Palliative Medicine is a passion of mine (stating the obvious) and I like to serve as a mentor, guide, advisor, Jedi Master or whatever you’d want to call me. To discuss your questions further offline, email me directly at and I’ll share with you a way to contact me directly and we can discuss further. Thank you for your interest.

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