The Steward Center for Palliative Care is a nationally recognized model which sets the “gold standard” for excellence in the provision of palliative services in our community.
Palliative care (pronounced pah-lee-uh-tive) is specialized care for the treatment of symptoms caused from life-limiting or chronic illnesses such as CHF, COPD, HIV, cancer, kidney disease, dementia, or others. Some symptoms which can be managed include pain, agitation, anxiety, shortness of breath, depression, nausea, or loss of appetite.
Our palliative care physician and nurse practitioners don’t replace the primary care physician or any specialist who is managing a patient’s care. Instead, they work alongside the managing physician to provide a “continuum of care” to more aggressively treat symptoms and provide comfort – thereby improving the patient’s quality of life. Think of the palliative care physician as the symptom management specialist while the disease or cancer is still being aggressively treated.
By implementing palliative care, the patient and their family gain not only a relationship with a new and focused approach to symptom management, but also gain a team of experts who help find all kinds of resources, while providing emotional, spiritual, and caregiver support. This more complete healthcare model is proven to decrease visits to the ER and to reduce hospital readmissions.
Out-patient ciinics are housed in the Lewis Cancer & Research Pavilion and at St. Mary’s Health Center, and we see patients throughout St. Joseph’s and Candler hospitals, and Landmark Hospital. The team consists of board certified physicians, nurse practitioners, chaplaincy, a Masters Level Licensed Clinical Social Worker certified in Hospice and Palliative Care, and the support and resources available through the Edel Caregiver Institute. Our services allow patients to have complex and lengthy conversations that other physicians may be unable to provide within the time constraints of a normal office visit. Ultimately, palliative care is a win-win for physicians, patients and their caregivers!
Please reach us during business hours at 912.354.8014 for assistance or more information. Providers can fax referrals and medical records to Fax: 912.298.0306.
Lavon Lowe, Palliative Care Coordinator
Dr. Laura Farless, Palliative Care Physician and Medical Director
Samantha Jones, RN, NP, Nurse Practitioner
Kathleen Flynn, RN, NP, Nurse Practitioner