Press Releases

Meeting the Needs of Older Adults with Serious Illness: Challenges and Opportunities in the Age of Health Care Reform

New York, NY (October 1, 2014)--According to palliative care experts Diane E. Meier. MD and Amy S. Kelley, MD, MSHS, six million people in the United States need palliative care.

Palliative care is specialized medical care focused on improving patient quality of life through relief from the symptoms, pain, and stress of a serious illness – whatever the diagnosis − including heart, liver and kidney disease, cancer, Parkinson’s and Alzheimer’s disease. It provides an added layer of support, often in addition to curative treatments.

In their new book, Meeting the Needs of Older Adults with Serious Illness: Challenges and Opportunities in the Age of Health Care Reform, published by Springer, Meier and Kelley map out how the principles of palliative care can effectively address many of the key challenges currently facing the U.S. healthcare system.

According to Kelley, Assistant Professor, Brookdale Department of Geriatrics and Palliative Medicine at the Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai, “By bringing together expert clinicians, researchers and policy leaders we hope to provide an easy-to-navigate roadmap for clinicians, healthcare administrators and policy makers to effectively initiate palliative care policy and program design. The overall goal of the book is to improve access to quality palliative care for patients and their families.”

The book comes at a critical time because the Affordable Care Act is poised to expand access to palliative care. According to Meier, Director of the Center to Advance Palliative Care (CAPC), “Research has demonstrated patients receiving palliative care experience improved quality of life, better symptom management, lower rates of depression and anxiety, and also improved survival. Crises can be prevented, thereby reducing need for emergency department visits, hospital use and their associated costs.”

Chapter contributors include experts from: Dana-Farber Cancer Institute, John Hopkins University, Massachusetts General Hospital Harvard Medical School, Vanderbilt University School of Medicine, National Quality Forum, National Health Policy Forum, American Cancer Society and AARP.

The hard-copy edition and ebook are published by Springer Science+Business Media (www.springer.com) a leading global scientific, technical and medical publisher, providing researchers in academia, scientific institutions and corporate R&D departments with quality content via innovative information products and services. Click here for information on Meeting the Needs of Older Adults with Serious Illness: Challenges and Opportunities in the Age of Health Care Reform.

About CAPC

The Center to Advance Palliative Care (CAPC) www.capc.org and www.getpalliativecare.org is a national organization dedicated to increasing the availability of palliative care for people facing serious illness. It is affiliated with The Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai in New York City.

About the Authors

Diane E. Meier, MD, is Director of the Center to Advance Palliative Care (CAPC), a national organization devoted to increasing the number and quality of palliative care programs in the United States. Under her leadership the number of palliative care programs in U.S. hospitals has more than tripled in the last 10 years. She is also Vice-Chair for Public Policy and Professor of Geriatrics and Palliative Medicine, Catherine Gaisman Professor of Medical Ethics, and was the founder and Director of the Hertzberg Palliative Care Institute from 1997-2011, all at the Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai in New York City.

Amy S. Kelley, MD, MSHS is Assistant Professor in the Brookdale Department of Geriatrics and Palliative Medicine at the Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai. She received her medical degree from Weill Cornell Medical College. She trained in internal medicine and geriatrics at the New York Presbyterian Hospital-Cornell University Medical Center and completed a Masters of Science in Health Services through the UCLA School of Public Health.

###

CONTACT: Lisa Morgan, LDM Strategies, 212.924.6182 or lmorgan@ldmstrategies.com.