Augusta Health Palliative Care
Palliative care is specialized medical care for people with serious illnesses. This type of care is focused on providing patients with relief from the symptoms, pain, and stress of a serious illness – whatever the diagnosis.
Our goal is to improve quality of life for both the patient and the family. The palliative care team works with a patient's other doctors to provide an extra layer of support. Palliative care is appropriate at any age and at any stage in a serious illness, and can be provided together with curative treatment.
How is Palliative Care different?
- Palliative Care offers symptom management, rather than curative treatments. Under the direction of your physician, palliative care uses sophisticated methods of pain and symptom control that enable the patient to live as fully and comfortably as possible.
- Palliative Care treats the person, not the disease. The team is made up of professionals who address the medical, emotional, psychological, and spiritual needs of the patient and family.
- Palliative Care emphasizes quality of life, rather than length of life. The palliative care movement stresses human values that go beyond the physician needs of the patient.
- Palliative Care considers the entire family, not just the patient. Patients and families are included in the decision making process, and bereavement counseling is provided to the family after the death of their loved one.
- Palliative Care offers help and support to the patient and family on a 24-hours-a-day, seven-days-a-week basis. For Palliative care patients and their families, help is just a phone call away. Patients routinely receive periodic in-home services of a nurse and physician.
Who can be a patient?
Any Person who...
- Lives in Staunton, Waynesboro, and the Augusta County service area
- Has someone to take care of them, helps them make decisions, and allows them to stay at home
- Wants to focus on living comfortably
- Has a physician who will work with Augusta Health
Anyone can make a referral to Palliative Care by calling (540) 245-7262
What services are included?
- RN Case Manager
- Chaplain services as needed
Services include but are not limited to:
- Symptom management (such as dyspnea, anxiety, nausea, pain)
- Assistance with coordinating care between the patient, family, and physicians
- Continuity of care across levels of care, from the hospital to home
- Ability to provide 24/7 coverage for crisis management at the patient's home
- Home based care for patients unable to readily get to a physician's office
- Assistance with advance care planning and identifying goals of care
- Facilitating family meetings
- Inpatient consultations
- Skilled facility visits
Who pays for Palliative Care?
- Most health insurance companies, like Blue Cross/Blue Shield, will pay for patients to have palliative care.
- Medicare, the health benefit for people over 65, pays 100% for palliative care.
- Medicaid, the health benefit for people needing help paying medical bills, also pays for palliative care.