Newswise — January 21, 2013 – Neptune, NJ – Jersey Shore University Medical Center has received the Advanced Certification in Palliative Care from The Joint Commission. Jersey Shore is the first hospital in the state to receive the accreditation, a testament to the quality and compassion that distinguishes Meridian Health’s and Jersey Shore’s Palliative Care Program.
Palliative care is specialized medical care that provides patients at any age or stage of illness with relief from the symptoms, pain and stress that accompany serious illnesses. Teams of doctors, nurses and other specialists offer added support to improve quality of life for both the patient and their family. “Palliative care is especially meaningful to Jersey Shore because it provides the most vulnerable patients and their families with a comprehensive and compassionate approach to managing advanced illness,” remarks Amy Frieman, M.D., Medical Director of Palliative Care at Meridian Health. “With more than 207,000 residents over the age of 65 living in Ocean and Monmouth counties,” Dr. Frieman continues, “It is our duty to offer the community medical care that is based on dignity and respect.”
The Joint Commission’s Advanced Certification for Palliative Care recognizes hospital inpatient programs that demonstrate exceptional patient and family-centered care and optimize the quality of life for patients with serious illness. The Joint Commission considers five distinct categories when evaluating palliative care programs: a formal, organized palliative care program led by an interdisciplinary team whose members are experts in palliative care; leadership endorsement and support of the program’s goals for providing care, treatment and services; a special emphasis on patient and family engagement; processes which support the coordination of care and communication among all care settings and providers; and the use of evidence-based national guidelines or expert consensus to guide patient care.
To receive the Advanced Certification for Palliative Care, a hospital must pass on-site certification reviews conducted by experts in palliative care. The certification decision is based on the evaluation of standards, clinical practice guidelines and performance measurement activities. Palliative care programs that successfully demonstrate compliance are awarded certification for a two-year period.
“At Jersey Shore, we are always focused on improving the quality of life for not only our patients, but also for the families that support them every day. Achieving this outstanding milestone is a testament to Jersey Shore’s dedicated team and the ongoing effort to provide patients and families with relief from the pain and stress that comes with a serious illness,” concludes Dr. Frieman.
About Jersey Shore University Medical Center:
Jersey Shore University Medical Center, a member of the Meridian Health family, is a not-for-profit teaching hospital and home to K. Hovnanian Children’s Hospital – the first children’s hospital in Monmouth and Ocean counties. Jersey Shore is the regional provider of cardiac surgery, a program which has been ranked among the best in the Northeast, and is home to the only trauma center and stroke rescue center in the region. Jersey Shore University Medical Center specializes in cardiovascular care, orthopedics and rehabilitation, cancer care, neuroscience, and women’s specialty services. For more information on Jersey Shore University Medical Center call 1-800-DOCTORS, or visit www.JerseyShoreUniversityMedicalCenter.com.