Call Us: 508-587-2121
To make a referral call: 508-894-5272
Referral fax: 508-256-0398

Palliative Care

Palliative Care helps patients who are facing a life-limiting illness continue to receive treatment, but adding a specialized focus on improving quality of life, generally through pain and symptom management.

Palliative care services are a unique blend of traditional home healthcare services and hospice services, providing the best of both worlds. Patients can still receive treatment, such as chemotherapy and radiation, but the treatment is palliative, not curative. We have found this to be an ideal transitional level of care for many patients as their disease progresses but treatment is not ready to be discontinued.

Examples of eligibility for palliative care services:

  • Patients receiving chemotherapy or radiation that may manage symptoms to promote comfort and prolong life, but that does not cure disease
    • Patients with cardiac or respiratory disease where the last line of treatment is being utilized by their MDs
    • A patient receiving dialysis that is needed more frequently; there may also be a decrease in the amount of fluid removed during dialysis
    • A patient with frequent re-hospitalizations with limited results from treatment options
    • A patient with progressive rapid decline who does not yet meet hospice criteria
    • A patient with general difficulty managing their symptoms at home

Hospice Care

According to Medicare eligibility, hospice is elected when there is an advanced stage life- limiting illness as well as any of the following:

  • Pain and other forms of suffering
  • A choice to focus on comfort care and quality of life rather than treatment
  • The family needs trained help and support to manage end- of-life -care in conjunction with their physician’s care
 

At BVNA, our palliative and hospice teams share the same staff. This means if your patient or family member is on our palliative program, but transitions to hospice, his/her team of clinicians will not change. We strongly believe in the benefits of continuity of care and the importance of familiarity during this time.

Our hospice patients and their families will receive the comfort that comes with a truly comprehensive team approach to serving them. Our hospice team is comprised of compassionate professionals that include:

  • Medical Director
  • Nurse Practitioner
  • Registered Nurses / Licensed Practical Nurses
  • Social Worker
  • Chaplain
  • Hospice Aides
  • Volunteers
  • Bereavement Support

In addition, a hospice nurse is on-call 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, to give support to the patient and family when needed.

Hospice focuses on caring, not curing. The hospice

team develops a care plan that meets each patient’s

and family’s needs, including:

  • Pain management and symptom control
  • Assisting with the emotional and spiritual aspects of dying
  • Providing medications, medical supplies, and equipment to ensure comfort measures are being met
  • Teaching caregivers how to care for the patient
  • Delivering special services like speech and physical therapy when needed
  • Arranging short-term inpatient care when a higher level of symptom management is needed or the caregiver needs respite time
  • Providing bereavement care and counseling for family and friends

It can help people who:

  • Have had multiple hospitalizations
  • Have made frequent visits to the ER
  • Been diagnosed with a life-threatening illness that requires intensive symptom management or end-of-life comfort care
  • Nursing
  • Home health aide care
  • Social work
  • Spiritual counseling
  • Bereavement counseling
  • Trained volunteers
  • Hospice physician services
  • Speech, physical, and occupational therapists
  •  

There are many programs and insurances that offer a hospice care benefit. These include Medicare, Medicaid and commercial health insurances. It is always best to verify exactly what is covered by your individual insurance plan. You can call us and we will be happy to help you figure this out.

You, your doctor or a hospital/rehab facility discharge planner or social worker can simply give us a call and we’ll take it from there.  Contact our Referral Department at 508-894-5272.

A quote from Bob Ford at the time of BVNA’s decision to launch its own hospice program:

“No longer will patients have to face the decision to stay with the BVNA caregivers they trust or transition to another agency’s hospice program to receive the wonderful benefits that come with those services. The decision to elect Hospice care is challenging enough without the added challenge of having to meet another set of caregivers when patients and families are at a very vulnerable point.”

BVNA’s hospice program began by assembling a specialized team of experienced and dedicated staff and fulfilling the rigorous processes necessary to achieve State and Federal licensure, certification, and accreditation, which was completed this past Fall. BVNA was then able to provide hospice care to its patients. The agency started slowly and methodically, transitioning existing patients who were receiving care from the agency’s home healthcare program to hospice care. With nearly 50 patients being cared for, the agency is ready to expand to outside referrals.

The benefit to hospice patients is best summed up by the words of Melanie Machado, RN, BSN, CHPN, BVNA’s Vice President of Hospice & Palliative Care Services, “I am so proud of what we have accomplished. I am so happy that we can be there for our patients and their loved ones. End-of-life is not easy on anyone and to see the relief that families have had once our hospice team became involved and making their loved ones comfortable, helping them all through the end-of-life journey, is very rewarding. It’s been an honor to care for these patients. ”

BVNA’s hospice program began by assembling a specialized team of experienced and dedicated staff and fulfilling the rigorous processes necessary to achieve State and Federal licensure, certification, and accreditation, which was completed this past Fall. BVNA was then able to provide hospice care to its patients. The agency started slowly and methodically, transitioning existing patients who were receiving care from the agency’s home healthcare program to hospice care. With nearly 50 patients being cared for, the agency is ready to expand to outside referrals.

The benefit to hospice patients is best summed up by the words of Melanie Machado, RN, BSN, CHPN, BVNA’s Vice President of Hospice & Palliative Care Services, “I am so proud of what we have accomplished. I am so happy that we can be there for our patients and their loved ones. End-of-life is not easy on anyone and to see the relief that families have had once our hospice team became involved and making their loved ones comfortable, helping them all through the end-of-life journey, is very rewarding. It’s been an honor to care for these patients. ”