Patient in hospital bed

Expanding palliative care to Milford

Thursday, May 24, 2018 |

Battling a serious disease can be overwhelming, but you don’t have to do it alone. Bayhealth can help you through this time with the Palliative Care program now offered at both Bayhealth Hospital, Kent Campus and Bayhealth Milford Memorial. Palliative care improves the lives of patients and their families when facing a serious illness.

Through the Palliative Care Program at Bayhealth, team members help patients suffering from the pain and symptoms of a serious illness. “We want to help patients live comfortably, and to optimize the quality of life for our patients and their families,” said Palliative Care Nurse Practitioner Theresa Latorre-Tegtmeier, MSN, APRN, FNP-C, who is based at Bayhealth Hospital, Kent Campus. Initially, the service was only offered at Bayhealth Hospital, Kent Campus, but in response to a rising need in the southern region, palliative care is now offered at Bayhealth Milford Memorial.

What’s important to remember about palliative care is that it’s more than end-of-life planning and isn’t hospice care. In fact, it’s appropriate for all stages of an illness and is for any illnesses, including cancer, cardiac disease, and lung disease. The Palliative Care team works with patients to make sure medical plans are based on the goals of the patient.

In a Palliative Care Program, patients can expect:

  • Specialized care for new, advanced, or chronic illness
  • Integration of life-prolonging therapy
  • Focus on early identification and ongoing assessment of healthcare preferences • Better understanding of medical condition and treatment choices
  • Relief from symptoms such as pain, shortness of breath, loss of appetite, difficulty sleeping, and fatigue
  • A team approach to provide an extra layer of support

Palliative Care Nurse Practitioner Suzette Flores, DNP, MSN, BSN, BSW, is leading the program in Milford. “I love being there for patients and families to provide education and options,” Flores said. “What I find is patients really appreciate the time we take to talk to them about what is important regarding their health.”

Referral into the program comes from a hospital-based physician. Visit the Bayhealth Palliative Care page for more information.