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Published on July 16, 2012

Palliative care nursing at home from Mercy Home Health

Serious illness can affect quality of life and the ability to do everyday activities. In-home palliative care provided by Mercy Home Health can ease those challenges and help patients live more comfortably.

palliative“For those with a chronic or debilitating health condition, palliative care in the home setting offers extra support that is holistic in its approach,” explains Mary Jo Coll, palliative care coordinator. “We help provide relief from the symptoms, pain and stress of serious illness.”

“The palliative care team is interdisciplinary,” says Jayne Green, RN, BSN, regional director of Mercy Home Health operations. Nursing support helps manage pain and symptoms such as shortness of breath, loss of appetite, nausea and vomiting. Psychological, emotional and spiritual support also are available.

“We can help patients set personal goals to become more active again or return to an activity they used to enjoy,” Green says. “Some patients need help just accepting their diagnosis and making plans for long-term care. We can help with that as well.”

A patient’s doctor or nurse usually recommends at-home palliative care, or patients can make the request themselves. To be eligible, patients must first qualify for home care, Green explains, which means they must meet the need for skilled nursing care.

Palliative care can benefit those diagnosed with serious health problems, including cancer, heart disease, kidney failure, dementia, lung disease such as chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, and HIV/AIDS.

“Overall, we help patients and their families achieve the best quality of life by alleviating symptoms, whether physical, emotional or spiritual, so they can focus on life-enhancing activities with loved ones,” Coll says.

By Your Side. Call Mercy Home Health at 1.888.690.2551 or visit mercyhomehealth.org to find out how we can support you.

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