In recent years, much of the Foundation's work in cancer has expanded to the continuum of cancer care from initial diagnosis throughout the cancer journey. As an outgrowth, the Foundation is exploring the area of palliative care which can be defined as "specialized medical care for people with serious illnesses which is focused on providing patients with relief from the symptoms, pain, and the stress of a serious illness". Typically, palliative care is provided by a team of doctors, nurses and other specialists who work with a patient’s primary doctor or oncologist.
In efforts to explore palliative care, the Foundation is supporting an initiative aimed at making palliative care more accessible to patients facing cancer and other life-threatening illnesses. The initiative provides support for the Chicagoland Palliative Medicine Physician Collective (Collective) to develop the “Primary Palliative Care Education Program to Improve Access to Palliative Care for Patients with Cancer”. The Collective is targeting 35 local acute care hospitals to assess palliative care patient needs. They are collaborating with local academic palliative medicine programs and hospices to deliver a comprehensive education curriculum that includes face to face, on-line, and direct experiential training. The clinical and educational training effort will equip local hospitals with best practices to drive improvement in palliative care. Training will be offered to physicians and advanced practice nurses to improve palliative care practice patterns and expand access to patients who are experiencing a life-threatening illness. For specific information regarding the Primary Palliative Care Training Program, please visit Coleman Palliative Medicine Training Program.
The Collective will join with major academic medical centers and hospices in the Chicago area to implement the Coleman Fellows Palliative Medicine Training Program. The partners include:
Major academic medical centers such as Rush University Medical Center, University of Chicago and Northwestern University
Non-profit hospice organizations such as Horizon Hospice and Palliative Care, Midwest Palliative and Hospice Care Center and Rainbow Hospice and Palliative Care
Hospital palliative care programs such as NorthShore University Health System and Central DuPage Hospital.
The Primary Palliative Care Education Program is co-directed by Dr. Sean O’Mahony at Rush University and Dr. Stacie Levine at the University of Chicago. For more information, please contact via email the Project Coordinator Aliza Baron, at University of Chicago or call 312-771-4452.