Page Discuss History Wikis > What is respite care? Respite care is a rest period provided for hospice patients’ families or caregivers. In cases where a patient’s caregiver has an emergency or simply needs to rest temporarily or for care giving stress, then patient may qualify for 5 days of hospice respite care. A hospice patient can be moved for a period of up to five days to a facility. This period allows the family or the caregiver to address their own issues or simply take a much needed rest. After the respite period, the patient can return to their home.