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Palliative Care Center Silicon Valley Opens to Help the Seriously Ill

Center offers expert medical care and extra layer of support to patients and caregivers

SAN JOSE, Calif. – Sept. 11, 2013 – For patients with a serious illness, treating the disease is only half of the battle. An equally large challenge lies in treating the overall impact of the disease as it affects both the patient and the family. This impact may be experienced through uncontrolled symptoms, the need to make difficult decisions, and concerns that the most troubling aspects of the illness are not being addressed.

A new medical facility in San Jose has opened to specifically focus on these often overlooked areas of medical care. The Palliative Care Center Silicon Valley™ at 455 O’Connor Drive, Suite 300, in San Jose is the first independent, community-based, licensed outpatient palliative care center of its kind in California. The center is a division of Hospice of the Valley, a leading non-profit provider of palliative care, hospice care, community grief support and education. 

San Jose Mayor Chuck Reed is scheduled to participate in a Ribbon-Cutting Ceremony at 9 a.m. Friday, Sept. 13, to mark the center’s opening. 

Consultation at the Palliative Care Center includes a comprehensive assessment and treatment plan to address unrelieved symptoms, such as pain and psychosocial distress, and expert guidance in assisting patients and caregivers to balance their various goals of care so that they can make the best treatment decisions possible.

Palliative care is rapidly emerging as a vital resource to those struggling with serious and life-threatening illnesses. After interviewing a broad cross-section of healthcare leaders and stakeholders, the University of California-Berkeley School of Public Health cited the development of community-based outpatient palliative care as one of the three most important initiatives necessary for improving the quality and cost-effectiveness of medical care in California. 

“Significant changes are happening in how we care for patients with chronic conditions,” said Sally Adelus, president and CEO of Hospice of the Valley. “The Palliative Care Center Silicon Valley was established to best meet their needs and support their caregivers. The center provides dedicated expertise in pain and symptom management, along with emotional and spiritual support for patients and their loved ones.

“Palliative care is intended to complement the treatment provided by the patient’s primary physician and other specialists and to coordinate care across these settings,” Adelus said. “It’s an extra layer of support for patients living with any chronic, serious illness, including cancer and other advanced illnesses.”

The specialized team at the Palliative Care Center Silicon Valley addresses the many needs of seriously ill patients and their caregivers:

·         Expert and proactive pain and symptom management that improves quality of life and daily function.

·         Care that is individualized and focused on the needs and goals of patients and their families.

·         Counseling by social workers and other team members to provide emotional, spiritual and practical support on adjusting to living with a serious illness.

·         Case management offering assistance in navigating the healthcare system and improved coordination of care across multiple healthcare settings. 

·         Caregiver support through training and practical assistance provided by staff and specially trained volunteers.

·         Complementary therapies, such as Reiki and massage, art and aroma therapy, for added comfort and relief.

“Palliative care is the ‘Zen of medicine,’ helping strike the dynamic balance between promoting life and relieving suffering,” said Neal Slatkin, M.D., vice president of medical services and chief medical officer for Hospice of the Valley. “Palliative care is about comfort, exploring all of the various treatment options, making informed decisions and living the best life possible at any stage of a serious illness. Palliative care is intended to take as much of the ‘dis-ease’ out of disease as possible, with recent research suggesting that doing so may prolong life, even when illnesses are quite advanced.”

Palliative care is appropriate at any stage of a serious illness, from time of diagnosis extending to more advanced stages. As soon as patients are diagnosed with a serious illness, they can seek help from Palliative Care Center Silicon Valley.

State and national healthcare leaders applaud the opening of the new facility.

“This one-stop location fills a critical need in the community,” said Kate O’Malley, senior program officer for the California HealthCare Foundation. “I hope it is so successful that every community will want to have one and be able to meet the needs of seriously ill people and their families with quality and compassionate care.”

“Hospice of the Valley has opened the first licensed community clinic in California specializing in the provision of palliative care,” said J. Donald Schumacher, president and CEO of the National Hospice and Palliative Care Organization. “It is a testament to their board and staff that this will become a leader in the nation.”

The Palliative Care Center Silicon Valley contracts with most insurance providers, Medicare and Medi-Cal.

If you or a loved one would like to learn more about the Palliative Care Center Silicon Valley, call 408.277.7777, email info@pccsv.org or visit www.pccsv.org.

About Palliative Care Center Silicon Valley

The Palliative Care Center Silicon Valley™ (PCCSV) is an independent, community-based, licensed outpatient palliative care center based in San Jose, Calif. It offers expert medical care dedicated to relieving the pain and other symptoms that can accompany serious illness, including the side effects of medical treatment and encompasses the physical, emotional, social and spiritual aspects of coping with a serious illness. The PCCSV offers a community resource website for caregivers and families at seriousillness.org/santaclaracounty. The PCCSV honors all cultures, beliefs, values and traditions, and is committed to serving its diverse community and providing equitable access to care for all regardless of financial ability. PCCSV is a division of Hospice of the Valley, a non-profit organization that provides serious illness and end-of-life care programs and services, including palliative and hospice care, grief counseling for adults, children and families, and emotional support, education and practical assistance. For more information about Palliative Care Center Silicon Valley or to learn how you can help as a donor or volunteer, call 408.277.7777 or visit pccsv.org.

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Media Contact:

Jeanne Wun

Community Relations

jwun@hospicevalley.org

408.489.6787

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