CAPC News Bites, December 3, 2014

CAPC News Bites, What you need to know this week:

CAPC Announces 2015 Training Dates for Palliative Care Leadership Centers™

2015 dates have been announced for Palliative Care Leadership Centers ™ (PCLC), which provide intensive, operational hands-on training and yearlong mentoring for palliative care programs at every stage of development and growth. Established by CAPC and the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation, PCLC has trained almost half of the nation’s hospital palliative care programs. For programs in their infancy, PCLC training will result in less ramp-up time and a more efficient, cost-effective program. For active programs, the PCLC curriculum will help ensure sustainabiliCAPC News Bitesty and growth. To view the full list of locations and dates, click here.

New Screening Tool Could Increase Palliative Care Referrals

The development of a screening tool may make it easier to identify patients in need of Palliative Care, but questions loom about its implications. The tool—used in a recent study at Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center to test how oncology providers identify patients with complex palliative care needs— consists of an 11-point questionnaire that scores patients from a range of 0-14. Based on this system, if patients score 5 or above, they are considered suitable for a palliative care consult.

Results show that one-third of patients tested qualified for a palliative care referral; twice as many as when oncologists used subjective judgment as their only method.   While these results point to more need, some question whether the current healthcare community is capable of responding.

“(The researchers) estimated that approximately half of the 1.5 million patients diagnosed in the United States with cancer each year would score 5 or more at an initial visit, resulting in the need for about 400 additional full-time palliative care specialists,” says the article.

Nurses and oncologists have also expressed concerns about the reliability of the scoring system because many items are “subjective or vaguely defined,” according to the study. To read the full story, click here.

Cambia Health Foundation Announces $10 Million Endowment to the Palliative Care Center of Excellence at UW Medicine in Seattle

Cambia Health Foundation has announced that it will provide a $10 million gift to UW Medicine for its Palliative Care Center of Excellence, a contribution that will secure the future of the center. The center will be renamed the Cambia Palliative Care Center of Excellence this month. The Center will employ research and education to improve quality of life for patients who need palliative care. Click here for the full announcement.

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