The Washington Rural Palliative Care Initiative is a pilot effort to better serve patients with serious illness in rural communities. Led by the Washington State Office of Rural Health at the Washington State Department of Health, this public-private partnership with the involvement of over 24 different organizations is designed to assist rural health systems and communities to integrate palliative care in multiple settings, such as emergency department, inpatient, skilled rehabilitation, home health, hospice, primary care, and long-term care.

Seven rural communities are currently participating in the Initiative. The Washington State Office of Rural Health team is linked to efforts in North Dakota, Wisconsin, and Minnesota, with technical assistance and funding from Stratis Health.

What is Palliative Care?

Palliative care is specialized care for people living with serious illness. Care is focused on relief from the symptoms and stress of the illness and treatment—whatever the diagnosis. The goal is to improve and sustain quality of life for the patient, loved ones and other care companions. It is appropriate at any age and at any stage in a serious illness and can be provided along with active treatment. Palliative care facilitates patient autonomy, access to information, and choice. The palliative care team helps patients and families understand the nature of their illness, and make timely, informed decisions about care.

How can other rural communities get involved?

  • A second cohort will be engaged contingent on funding, which is currently being sought. Please contact Pat Justis if you would like to be notified.

  • This portal has resources intended to help a wider group of rural health communities and organizations.

  • 2019 training dates are open to rural health communities outside the cohort.

Learn more about the Washington Rural Palliative Care Initiative.

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Palliative Care Cohort Organization

 

Location

Columbia Basin Hospital Ephrata
Columbia County Health System Dayton
Jefferson Healthcare Port Townsend
Newport Hospital and Health Services Newport
Okanogan Palliative Care Team Okanogan County
Pullman Regional Hospital Pullman
Whitman Hospital and Medical Center Colfax

 

Contact

Washington State Department of Health

Pat Justis

Executive Director, State Office of Rural Health
Leader, Washington Rural Palliative Care Initiative

Patricia.justis@doh.wa.gov
360-236-2805

www.doh.wa.gov/ruralhealth

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