Palliative Care Program
The Palliative Care Program at Southeastern Med is dedicated to providing the best quality of life for persons with advanced or chronic illness by insuring their comfort and dignity.
What is Palliative Care?
Palliative Care is a team approach that aims to relieve symptoms and improve quality of life for patients and families. In conjunction with medical treatments, Palliative Care educates patients and families about their chronic disease or illness. Understanding what the disease is and how it may affect you physically and mentally is a vital part in learning to manage and control the symptoms while preserving dignity.
Illnesses can become chronic diseases lasting a few months to several years with expensive medical treatments and multiple hospitalizations. One of the goals of the Palliative Care Program is early management through a blend of pharmacology, relaxation techniques, visual/guided imagery, and behavioral interventions. Many of these illnesses can be effectively managed outpatient, controlling symptoms before the need for hospitalization, decreasing the financial burden on patients and allowing them to control the illness, not the illness to control them.
Who is on the Palliative Care Team?
The Palliative Care Program includes nurses, social workers, chaplains, respiratory therapist, pharmacists, and a physician advisor. Coordination of care with case managers between inpatient and outpatient settings such as home health, hospice, or extended care facilities, allows the team to focus on you as a whole: mind, body, and spirit.
Does Palliative Care mean end of life?
No. Palliative Care can include end of life issues such as the understanding of living wills, healthcare power of attorney, organ/tissue donation, cardio-pulmonary resuscitation (CPR), and nutrition/hydration concern. Through support and education, the patient and family can understand what a person’s choices are and what they do or do not want done medically as their disease progresses. Every individual has the right to be their own advocate, to make these decisions on what they want. Coping with an advanced or chronic illness can often be difficult and confusing. You and your family may have questions about your illness or the choices you have. Southeastern Meds Palliative Care Program offers explanations, choices, and support.
For more information on the Palliative Care Program, call 740-439-8000 ext 8688.