Samaritan’s Palliative Medical Partners is a medical practice employing physicians, advance practice nurses, and registered nurse liaisons to meet with you and your family in an office setting or at bedside in the hospital.
During a palliative consultation, the practitioner’s goal is to relieve your serious-illness symptoms, offer psychosocial support, and/or engage in discussions about your healthcare wishes.
The Palliative Medical Partners team explores your quality of life, while living with a serious illness, as YOU define it.
Though there is a shortage of palliative specialists nationally, Samaritan is proud to offer the depth and expertise of the region’s largest palliative practice for the health and well-being of Southern New Jersey residents.
The practice includes 7 physicians who are board certified in hospice and palliative medicine; 10 palliative-trained nurse practitioners; and 5 registered nurse liaisons.
GOAL: To work with, not replace, your personal physician’s treatment plan
Samaritan experts, board certified in palliative care, provide an extra layer of support. They care for you even while other doctors work with you to try to cure your illness.
In fact, they will communicate and coordinate with the other healthcare providers who are caring for you so that everyone is aware of and working toward the same goal: to enhance your quality of life as you live with your serious illness.
GOAL: To provide relief from your pain and symptoms so you have more strength to tolerate treatments
Samaritan’s palliative team helps you recover from your illness by relieving symptoms—such as pain, anxiety, or loss of appetite—as you undergo sometimes-difficult medical treatments or procedures, such as surgery or chemotherapy.
GOAL: To help you and your family understand your condition and the choices open to you every step of the way
The team will take the time to explain your illness, and answer your questions about the various treatment options available to you and how those treatments may affect your quality of life.
Just as importantly, they will listen to what matters most to you at each stage of illness, and work to match your care plan with the goals and desired outcomes you’ve shared.
In collaboration with other physicians on your healthcare team, our board-certified physicians and palliative-trained nurse practitioners provide inpatient and outpatient consultations in settings across South Jersey.
In the early stages of your serious illness, you may choose to make an office appointment for a consultation or follow-up care with our specialists for:
If your illness progresses, our physicians or nurse practitioners may visit you at home or in the assisted living or nursing home community where you live.
Hospitalized patients may receive a palliative or hospice consultation bedside or in hospital departments such as the Emergency Department or Intensive Care Unit.
In the hospital, our staff’s support is invaluable in helping to develop a care plan to guide your family members who may be called upon to make some difficult, and at times gut-wrenching, decisions if you were to become unable to speak for yourself.
One of the key benefits of palliative care is adding specialists to your care team who are trained in having these sensitive conversations so that you and your family can make decisions based on medical facts, and how each option applies to your unique set of circumstances, values, culture, and beliefs.
What will your loved one’s quality of life be like if you choose to receive palliative care in addition to his/her curative treatments?
What would your loved one’s quality of life be like if you decide to end chemotherapy that is not working and request hospice’s comfort care? Where would that care be provided?
What documents should be filled out if your loved one has never discussed these wishes with family members?
Help in completing advance directives such as the Physician’s Order for Life-Sustaining Treatment (POLST), a prescription for the care you would want or not want should you be unable to speak for yourself. It can be overwhelming for family members to make healthcare decisions when there is no verbal or written plan to follow. By completing the POLST form, you are offering a road map for family members to assist them in carrying out your wishes.
What does it mean if I ask my medical team to “do everything” to keep me alive?
Are there times when the burdens of care will outweigh any benefit?
Even when a family member has a POLST form or other advance directive, there may be situations not specifically addressed or a family member may feel conflicted in making a decision.
A hospitalist has recommended a feeding tube or a ventilator. How these measures help or hinder my loved one’s recovery or peaceful transition?
Palliative Medical Partners visits are c covered by Medicare, Medicaid, and most commercial insurers with applicable co-payments and deductibles. If you have any questions about coverage and cost, please call us at (855) 337-2808.
Jefferson Heath, Saint John of God Community Services, and Virtua named Samaritan as their preferred provider of palliative care for their patients.
We are grateful for their vote of confidence in our care. Within these health systems, your first meeting with a member of Samaritan’s medical team may be with one of our palliative physicians, nurse practitioners or registered nurse liaisons.