Originally, the words hospes and hospitium were used to denote not only a certain relationship between individuals, but also the place in which the relationship developed.
Later, hospice, derived from these words, described a place of refuge for weary or sick travelers seeking rest on life's journey.
Today, hospice refers to a "program" of care for "the dying," a "type" of care synonymous with palliative care, or a "location" of care in the community — a reflection of scientific thinking regarding the end of life.
Hawthorne D and Yurkovich. Hope at the end of life: Making a case for hospice. Palliative and Supportive Care, 2004;2:415-417.