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Advanced Illness and Supportive Care

Supportive care, commonly referred to as "palliative care," attempts to alleviate the symptoms related to a health condition, rather than “curative care” that is meant to address the underlying cause of the condition. Not just for end-of-life, supportive care can address common concerns like pain management, financial stress related to health care, functional capabilities, emotional and spiritual well-being.

Substantial evidence suggests that supportive care delivered at the point of diagnosis for patients with many chronic conditions, major surgeries, and end-of-life care can significantly improve quality of life and reduce costs. Supportive care can also be delivered to caregivers, helping them cope with the stress and anxiety often associated with taking care of ailing dependents. Through plan design, condition support programs, network design, and communications, employers can promote supportive care at point of diagnosis for patients and caregivers alike.
 

"If palliative care were a pill... patients would make it a blockbuster drug in no time flat."
— Melissa Healy, Los Angeles Times

 

Featured Resources

More than a Name Change More than a Name Change: Reframing Palliative Care to Supportive Care
Palliative care reduces costs and improves outcomes, but the name is often mistakenly associated with dying. To reduce stigma, the Business Group suggests that large employers reframe palliative care to supportive care.

Plan Design and Benefit Assessment Tool An Employers Guide to Cancer Treatment and Prevention: Plan Design and Assessment Tool
Designed to help employers assess and design their medical (including behavioral health), pharmacy, and clinical support and condition management benefits.

Featured Resource Care at the End of Life for Advanced Cancer Patients: When to Choose Supportive Care
Consumer Reports’ has created several consumer-friendly communication materials to help patients understand their options when it comes to a variety of health conditions, including cancer care.

 

Also of Interest

Impact of Advanced Illness on the Workplace: What Employers Need to Know
Get a broad overview of the multifaceted challenges both employees and employers are encountering with advanced illness and strategies for supporting patients and caregivers alike

The Sandwich Generation: Employer Perspectives on Caregiving and Wellness
Provides two examples of caregiving programs which were implemented as an employee benefit by large employers.

Employees as Caregivers: Child Care and Elder Care
Survey looks at what benefits employers offer to help employees who are caring for ill children or other family members.

 

Impact of Advanced Illness on the Workplace: What Employers Need to Know

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