Palliative care can begin whenever a patient and clinician feel it can help. For many, this happens shortly after the diagnosis of a serious condition. Patients and their families may choose to receive these and other palliative care services:
- Expert management of pain and physical symptoms that can make living hard
- Care coordination between primary and specialty care physicians, care teams, therapists, and others
- Social work and advocacy services, including:
- Helping to identify and refer to resources for financial assistance, insurance needs, transportation, etc.
- Choosing options for care or places to live
- Creating advance healthcare directive documents
- Crisis prevention and management plans
- Support and guidance around personal issues of meaning and purpose during times of change
- Spiritual care and support for people of all faiths and beliefs
- Support for families and friends who are grieving a person's death
- Visits from members of our specially-trained Compassionate Companion Volunteers program
- Companionship from Cheshire Volunteers during sometimes long and lonely hospital days in the form of writing notes or making phone calls to maintain a patient's connection to the community, reading to people who find it difficult to read themselves or offering music and/or conversation
- Massage, Reiki and other soothing therapies proven to improve emotional and physical symptoms
- Expressing yourself, your emotions, and your personality through the arts, including creative writing, visual arts, and harp instrumentals
Support where and when it's needed
Our goal is to provide comprehensive supportive care across all healthcare settings.
We help those who have experienced the death of someone they love cope with the grief that naturally follows.
Inpatient consultation service
We see patients and families who have emerging needs as new consults in the hospital, but we also proactively try to support patients and families we have an established relationship with when they unexpectedly require admission to the hospital. We help connect you to other resources that may support you while you are in the hospital, such as care coordination, chaplaincy, healing arts, creative arts, or psychosocial support.
We provide initial evaluations, follow-up visits, and interim care provided through regular check-ups by the Palliative Care team. Whenever possible, we coordinate with other specialists to improve healthcare team communication and minimize the burden of travel for clinical appointments.
Patient and family education
We help patients and families to understand their health conditions and treatment options. We also assist patients and families in adjusting to the practical challenges and emotional stress of caring for someone they love who is seriously ill.
We provide assistance during normal office hours by calling the nurse line at 603-354-5454 ext. 3527
Support and Education
Learn more about palliative care and related topics:
- Advance directives: See why it is important for you and your family to have written instructions about your healthcare wishes in your medical record if you have a health crisis that leaves you unable to speak for yourself. An advance directive is a gift to your family in a time of crisis and stress.
- Frequently asked questions (from Dartmouth Hitchcock Medical Center): Read the answers to frequently asked questions about palliative care.
- Get Palliative Care: This website provides information about palliative care.