September is here, and back to school is on everyone's mind. Chautauqua County students aren't the only ones learning. NY Connects is here to assist you with home and community-based services to keep people of all ages abreast of the new programs and opportunities available to Chautauqua County residents. The Chautauqua Palliative Care program is a new opportunity for people facing life changing illnesses. The palliative care program is different from other care programs most people might think of.
Palliative care improves the quality of a patient's life by: managing pain control, nausea, fatigue, depression and anxiety regarding their illness. It also manages symptoms while the patient is actively fighting an illness through treatments for cure and/or other medical care options. This aim is to keep people as active and comfortable as possible while remaining independent and living fully. The palliative care program works to benefit patients at all stages of illness. The palliative care program supports patients and their families in navigating the medical system. Support can include emotional counseling, financial counseling and/or assistance in making difficult choices, and advanced-care planning for end of life choices.
The program utilizes the definition: "Palliative care is interdisciplinary care that aims to relieve suffering and improve the quality of life for patients with a life threatening illness and their families."
Expert control of pain and symptoms and practical support for patient and family is integrated into every stage of illness along with other appropriate medical treatments. This is different and may be in addition to care one may receive in a hospital, nursing home, in your home or Hospice care. The palliative care program is different and separate from Certified Hospice Care. Palliative care promotes: Communication, discussion on advance directives, symptom management, focus on goals of care, empowerment, and cost effective use of health care resources.
Consultations from the Chautauqua County Palliative program may consist of medical, nursing, social work and spiritual-care components. The program works as consultations with the patient's current primary care physician from experts in these areas who can connect services and make recommendations to the client and primary care physician. The palliative care program supports the patient's primary care physician in many ways, including helping with care coordination and time intensive communications regarding goals of care and treatment options.
The team members are experts in the field of palliation. NY Connects can assist the palliative care program with home and community based services that may include Meals on Wheels referral, personal emergency response alarm referrals, health insurance counseling, benefits counseling for Medicare and Medicaid and options counseling which can assist a client in identifying their needs and connecting services.
Currently the referral process is to call Chautauqua County Hospice offices at 338-0033. Specify that you would like a palliative care referral. The palliative care team will obtain a physician's order for palliative consult and call to arrange visit made. The management of chronic disease including palliative care, Hospice care and bereavement care is all in one place for patients who need assistance. You may need only pieces of the program, and the palliative care program will tailor your needs and goals into a plan to support you and your loved ones across the spectrum. The right care at the right time for each individual. You are encouraged to call and discuss your or loved ones' needs with the palliative care program team members.
NY Connects is information and assistance telephone service provided by NY state for people of all ages, who have ongoing health problems and needs. This service is confidential and free and focused on the consumer's needs and resources available to them. NY Connects can assist you even further by making referrals directly to several programs even while you are on the phone line, saving you time and additional phone calls. Connecting people with helpful services and programs that meet their needs is what NY Connects is here for, providing information to people who may need additional levels of care and assisting them in pursuing them.
You can access Chautauqua County New York Connects in many ways to fit your needs. Email firstname.lastname@example.org, call 753-4582 (Mayville), 363-4582 (Dunkirk) or 661-7582 (Jamestown). The fax number is 753-4477. You can even come to our main office location at 7 N. Erie St., Mayville in the HRC building at the County seat offices. NY Connects is brought to you by the Chautauqua County Office for the Aging and the Chautauqua County Department of Social Services.