Providence to Support Local Home-Based Palliative Care Efforts

April 13, 2022 Providence News Team

Providence St. Joseph Hospital in Eureka and Hospice of Humboldt announced recently that a $100,000 grant from Providence’s local Community Health Investment fund will support the launch and development of Hospice’s new Community Based Palliative Care program.

In addition to the funding, St. Joseph Hospital’s inpatient palliative care and CARE Network teams will work closely with Hospice of Humboldt to extend care from inside the hospital into the homes of those patients that need it most. The focus of this multi-disciplinary approach will be on coordinating care for particularly vulnerable and seriously ill patients in the community. 

Palliative care is focused on the providing relief from the symptoms and stress of illness. The goal is to improve quality of life for both the patient and their family. It can be provided alongside curative treatment and addresses the needs of the whole person body, mind and spirit. Hospice care focuses on comfort care for people facing a terminal illness without curative intent.
“This effort is deeply connected to our Mission and core values of Excellence, Justice, Compassion, Dignity and Integrity, which calls us to foster relationships and collaborate with others, and to be steadfast in serving our community, especially the poor and vulnerable,” said Martha Shanahan, director of Community Health Investment for Providence in Humboldt County.

The St. Joseph Hospital inpatient palliative care team is led by medical director John Nelson, MD, along with a full-time nurse, two social workers and spiritual care partners. These care providers work together with the patient’s other doctors to provide an extra layer of support based on the needs of the patient.

Currently, Hospice of Humboldt offers a full range of hospice services to patients in their homes, skilled nursing facilities, residential care facilities, and at the Ida Emmerson Hospice House in Eureka. By adding in-home palliative care services, Hospice of Humboldt will now be able to meet the specialized medical needs and care coordination for people with life-limiting illnesses including but not limited to cancer, heart failure, and chronic lung disease, who haven’t chosen hospice services.

“We’re incredibly grateful for the partnership and support Providence St. Joseph Hospital is providing with funding and the clinical expertise of their palliative care team,” said Dianne Keating, interim CEO, Hospice of Humboldt. “Together, we will be able to offer a full and robust palliative care suite of services for those in our community dealing with serious, advanced or chronic illnesses and provide support for their loved ones.”


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