This self-directed, self-paced learning activity provides foundational concepts for successfully building, growing, or redesigning palliative care programs in home, office, or long-term care settings. It is intended for individuals or teams that are new to, or in the early stages of, community-based palliative care program design or re-design. Concepts include conducting a needs assessment, building a business plan and budget, determining program staffing, and more.

This learning activity takes approximately 12 hours to complete, and is best done in blocks of time over the course of days or weeks, rather than spread out over months. At the end, you will have the essential information to begin designing a community-based palliative care program, tools to measure your program’s impact, and an outline for how to showcase its value to your stakeholders.

Complete the Learning Activity

This comprehensive Learner’s Guide delivers step-by-step instruction for designing a community-based palliative care program. Each of the 16 sections in the guide includes key concepts of program design, a case study, supplemental tools, and a corresponding worksheet with activities to help you apply the concepts to your program design. The guide is best viewed on a computer or tablet (to access the hyperlinks), or printed.

Concepts of Community-Based Palliative Care Program Design 101 Learner's Guide
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This Learner’s Guide organizes and structures the Concepts of Community-Based Palliative Care Program Design 101 learning activity. It contains 16 sections that build on each other.

At the end of each section, use the corresponding worksheet to gather information, record reflections, and document ideas about your program. You can use the information in your completed worksheets as a road map for your program’s design. The worksheets are Microsoft Word files, so they are best utilized on a computer, or printed.

Concepts of Community-Based Palliative Care Program Design 101, Section 1 Worksheet: Understand the Definition of Palliative Care
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Reflect on your understanding of the definition of palliative care and why it matters how others perceive what palliative care is. Describe elements to include in your program’s definition.

Concepts of Community-Based Palliative Care Program Design 101, Section 2 Worksheet: Understand the Foundational Principles of Community-Based Palliative Care
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Reflect on the core characteristics of community-based palliative care and record key approaches your program should take to operationalize the National Consensus Project’s Domains of Quality Care.

Concepts of Community-Based Palliative Care Program Design 101, Section 3 Worksheet: Conduct a Needs Assessment Part 1 – Gather and Analyze Quantitative Data
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Reflect on the importance of conducting a needs assessment as a first step in planning a program. Assess the types of information you need to collect as part of the assessment, and describe how assessment findings influence your program’s design.

Concepts of Community-Based Palliative Care Program Design 101, Section 4 Worksheet: Conduct a Needs Assessment Part 2 – Identify your Stakeholders and Their Priorities
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Reflect on and record who your program’s stakeholders are and how their priorities influence your program’s design.

Concepts of Community-Based Palliative Care Program Design 101, Section 5 Worksheet: Understand the Relationship Between Payment Structure and Program Design
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Reflect on the information needed to determine your program’s payment model(s), and record thoughts on how the payment model affects your program’s services and staffing.

Concepts of Community-Based Palliative Care Program Design 101, Section 6 Worksheet: Determine the Impact of Organizational Structure on Design
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Reflect on how your program’s location within the organization influences program design, and review administrative considerations to clarify your program’s relationship with its organizational home.

Concepts of Community-Based Palliative Care Program Design 101, Section 7 Worksheet: Develop Community Partnerships
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Record the types of health and social service organizations your program might partner with to ensure the range of expertise and resources necessary to care for your program’s patients, and their caregivers.

Concepts of Community-Based Palliative Care Program Design 101, Section 8 Worksheet: Determine the Model of Clinical Responsibility
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Reflect on common models of clinical responsibility in community-based palliative care programs. Record how the models affect the program’s services and staffing.

Concepts of Community-Based Palliative Care Program Design 101, Section 9 Worksheet: Establish the Setting for Care Delivery
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Reflect on how the proposed venue for your program (home, office, and/or long-term care setting) aligns with the gaps your program is designed to fill. Record operational considerations that emerge based on the program’s venue of care.

Concepts of Community-Based Palliative Care Program Design 101, Section 10 Worksheet: Determine the Program’s Patient Population
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Reflect on the types of patients your program will target and how you will convey this information to potential referrers. Record essential elements to include in your referral process.

Concepts of Community-Based Palliative Care Program Design 101, Section 11 Worksheet: Determine Program Services and Plan for Service Delivery
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Record your thoughts on determining your program’s service package, including considerations such as stakeholder priorities, program capacity, patient assessments, administrative and clinical workflows, and transitions of care.

Concepts of Community-Based Palliative Care Program Design 101, Section 12 Worksheet: Determine Program Staffing
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Reflect on skills to consider when hiring and training staff for your community-based palliative care program. Draft a staffing plan that is designed to meet the needs of your program’s patients.

Concepts of Community-Based Palliative Care Program Design 101, Section 13 Worksheet: Build the Budget
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Reflect on potential organizational partners that can assist with developing your program’s budget. Record your business planning assumptions about the program’s patient population, service model, and staffing.

Concepts of Community-Based Palliative Care Program Design 101, Section 14 Worksheet: Create a Business Plan
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Reflect on factors that influence your business planning process, and identify the tasks needed to complete your business plan.

Concepts of Community-Based Palliative Care Program Design 101, Section 15 Worksheet: Evaluate Program Delivery and Outcomes
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Reflect on processes for choosing, collecting, and analyzing data to evaluate your program. Identify measures that gauge the program’s response to the needs and priorities of your stakeholders.

Concepts of Community-Based Palliative Care Program Design 101, Section 16 Worksheet: Showcase the Program’s Value
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Reflect on how to prepare for meeting with your organization’s leadership to justify your program design and garner support. Describe the elements of your program’s elevator speech.

Concepts of Community-Based Palliative Care Program Design 101: All Worksheets
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A compilation of worksheets for each section of the Community-Based Palliative Care Program Design 101 learning activity. For learners who prefer to access all 16 worksheets in one file.

Throughout this learning activity, you will be instructed to complete the following operational courses. They are all listed here for your convenience, but you should only take them when directed. These online courses offer free continuing education credits to CAPC members.

Introduction to Palliative Care in the Community

Defining community-based palliative care: which patients need it, how it is delivered, and how it differs from inpatient palliative care.

Needs Assessment: Ensuring Successful Community-Based Palliative Care

Evaluating patient need, service requirements, care settings, and stakeholder priorities for the community-based palliative care program.

Office-Based Palliative Care Program Design

Designing and implementing an office-based palliative care program, including clinical model and operational considerations.

Program Design for Palliative Care Delivered in the Home

Translating needs assessment into service design for the community-based palliative care program.

Building the Business Plan for Community-Based Palliative Care

Building a budget and a business plan for the community-based program. Includes business planning tools.

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Concepts of Community-Based Palliative Care Program Design 101 Evaluation

Complete this evaluation after finishing the Concepts of Community-Based Palliative Care Program Design self-directed learning activity.