Palliative Community Resources offers a holistic approach to caring for patients living with a serious illness. Nurse Practitioners are focused on physical wellbeing but are also concerned with each patient’s emotional and spiritual comfort. Nurse practitioners provide assessment and care interventions for patients at home either short, medium or long-term.
Patients that decline and are eligible for higher levels of in-home support are referred on. Patients who remain appropriate for in home symptom management continue to have regular House Calls from the Palliative Team.
Chaplains support patient care as defined by the patient’s own goals for care. Foremost, the Chaplain is dedicated to providing the patient with care and spiritual counsel that meets their needs and is in accordance with that patient’s wishes. Interacting with a Chaplain is entirely optional, and the patient can change their mind at any time.
Medical Social Workers
Patients living with a serious illness are under great stress and often require a skilled medical social worker to help process and address their complex and inter-related needs. The changes and pressures that accompany serious illness can magnify family tensions and trigger new difficulties. Social Workers have specialized expertise in these issues and can help patients adjust, cope and plan for the journey ahead.
Ways in which Medical Social Workers assist patients and families include:
- Counseling to work through how individuals view their illness and how to effectively manage their feelings about their current and future goals for care.
- Educating patients, families and the community about available resources on additional support, coping strategies, and managing their illness
- Assistance with paperwork, like reviewing advanced directives or initiating specific resuscitate orders
- Navigating medical or veteran benefits, and providing advice for their current and future goals for care
- Assess challenges and risks for patient living environments that include identifying safety risks and emotional support systems. Once a problem is identified, the social worker should mitigate risks and direct patients and families to the appropriate resources.
- Connecting patients with additional support services such as Meals on Wheels, Life Alert, support groups, or financial resources.
When recommended, Palliative patients are eligible to receive nutrition support and other resources from our Food Pantry and Community Donation Center.