For almost two decades, Memorial Sloan-Kettering in New York City has offered supportive care services to its patients. Today, the Pain and Palliative Care Center is patient- and family-oriented and operates based on a collaborative approach between a clinical nurse specialist, a doctor, and a social worker. The clinical nurse specialist coordinates care. Consultation team members cover areas including psychiatry, rehabilitation, nutrition, and spirituality. Although the team is based at Sloan-Kettering, its focus is on patients living in the community. Each of the two clinical nurse specialists on the team serves from 12 to 15 patients and families.
The clinical nurse specialist performs many roles:
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This online version of the book Improving Care for the End of Life: A Sourcebook for Health Care Managers and Clinicians is provided with permission of Americans for Better Care of the Dying [ www.abcd-caring.org ] and Oxford University Press. All rights reserved.
For further information on quality improvement in end-of-life care visit The Palliative Care Policy Center [ www.medicaring.org ].