Thursday, July 21 | Thought Leadership, Post-Acute Care, Value-based Care

Unlocking Success in Palliative Care for Providers and Patients

By Dawn Iddings, Senior Vice President & Managing Director, Post-Acute

The demand for palliative care is growing, yet access to services remains a challenge.

Consider these stats:

  • Approximately 90 million Americans are living with serious illness, and this number is expected to more than double in the next 25 years as the population ages.
  • Fewer than 5% of patients with serious illnesses who stand to benefit from palliative care actually receive it.
  • Approximately 68% of Medicare costs are related to people with four or more chronic conditions – the typical palliative care patient.

However, the lack of access is beginning to change as payers begin to see the clinical and financial benefits of community-based, interdisciplinary palliative care.

Palliative care, which aims to provide relief from the symptoms and stress of a serious illness, is most often provided by hospice organizations. According to the Center to Advance Palliative Care, about 50% of community-based palliative care providers are hospices.

A rising number of hospices have been diversifying their services to engage patients further upstream and take advantage of emerging value-based payment models, with palliative care as one of the most common new business lines.

Jim Parker, editor of Hospice News, joined Netsmart’s Mike Valentine (CEO) and Dawn Iddings (Sr. VP/Managing Dir., Post-Acute) in a recent Netsmart CareThreads podcast to talk about improving access and education of palliative care, the pitfalls and benefits of entering new value-based payment models and the types of technology needed to succeed with these models.  

Parker says that palliative care can consist of different models, though he did list three defining characteristics.

  1. Palliative care must be interdisciplinary
  2. Care must be aligned with the patient's goals and wishes
  3. It is not the same as hospice care; therefore, patients should have access to palliative  services long before they reach their last 6 months of life. 

To hear these thought leaders discuss why so many leading hospices are launching palliative care service lines and how they are succeeding, click here to listen to the podcast.


Center to Advance Palliative Care (CAPC)

National Academy of State Health Policy


Meet the Author

Dawn Iddings · Senior Vice President & Managing Director, Post-Acute

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