Maria is a 63-year-old woman with a history of polysubstance abuse. “I used to do heroin every day for 32 years,” she says. While heroin was her drug of choice, she also dabbled in cocaine, alcohol, pain killers, and…
SBH Health System offers palliative care services for patients facing advanced chronic diseases or critical illness. These services provide patients with relief from the symptoms and stress of a serious illness. The focus is on improving quality of life by managing distressing symptoms, helping with decision making, offering hope, and developing a plan of care that reflects the patient’s needs and values.
Palliative care can be provided at any point in the disease process. Patients may want to focus on a treatment for their condition, or choose to make comfort their top priority.
Hospice care is the final stage of palliative care. This helps patients whose disease is not responsive to curative treatment and whose goals are to manage their symptoms; deal with social, psychiatric and spiritual issues; and achieve the best possible quality of life for both themselves and their loved ones.
In collaboration with Hospice of New York, SBH Health System operates a beautifully furbished 18-bed unit. Care is provided by a highly skilled specialized healthcare team, including physicians, nurses, social workers and pastoral/spiritual care counselors (including clergy) to support patients and their families with a wide range of advanced illnesses.
Our hospice unit provides short-term care, with an average length of stay of between seven and 14 days. Many of these patients were previously at an acute care hospital or nursing home, or need to be stabilized before returning home for in-home hospice care.
Included are both private and semi-private rooms, as well as beautifully appointed family and meditation lounges and a family kitchen and dining area. Families can spend time with their loved ones in a warm, comfortable home-like setting 24 hours a day, seven days a week.
Patients can be referred for hospice services by hospitals, nursing homes and physicians, as well as their families. Services are generally covered by Medicare, Medicaid and most private insurances. For more information on the hospice unit at St. Barnabas Hospital, call Hospice of New York at 718-472-1999.