We Help Patients Live Well
Palliative care (pronounced PAL ee ha tiv) is patient and family-centered medical care focused on relief of the pain, signs of sickness and stress caused by serious illness. Our team of palliative care specialists will help you cope with and ease the signs of illness, including:
- Fear or worry
- Loss of meaning, control, dignity, relationships
- Breathing problems
- Feeling tired
- Not feeling hungry
- Mouth sores
- Feeling sick to your stomach
We help patients live well. Our goal is to provide the best possible quality of life for patients and their families.
Palliative Care is Different than Hospice Care
Palliative Care is for everyone with a serious illness that keeps them from living as well as possible. Many patients continue to get healing therapy while receiving palliative care. Palliative care is right at any time during a serious illness.
When an illness has progressed to an advanced stage and life-prolonging interventions are no longer desired, Hospice Care can provide compassion, care and comfort through the end of life.
Support Tailored to Meet Your Needs
We work closely with you to determine which services will provide the greatest benefit, taking into consideration each person's needs and preferences. These can include:
- Advance Care planning
- Help with treatment choices, decisions and goals
- Emotional and spiritual support
- Assistance with community resources
Understanding Your Wishes
Because we focus on helping patients live as well as possible, we may ask questions like:
Do you have any signs of illness that are bothering you right now?
What gives meaning to your life?
How would you like to spend your time among work, school, family, hobbies and other activities?
How can we help you and your family cope with the changes caused by your illness?
Do you have a Health Power of Attorney, Living Will or Physician Orders for Life Sustaining Treatment (POLST)?
Our Focus is You
Our team of specially trained Palliative experts includes:
Rebecca Kowaloff, MD - Medical Director
Dr. Kowaloff provides both care for patients in the hospital as well as the practice setting. She is a Primary Care Provider in Internal Medicine.
Bridget Franciose, NP - Palliative Care Navigator
Bridget provides consults for hospitalized patients and guides patients through the healthcare system, ensuring that care is well coordinated, personalized and consistent with the patient's goals and values.
Nonie Freeman, Palliative Care Chaplin
Nonie assesses and addresses the spiritual needs of patients and families, with a focus on what gives individuals a sense of meaning and providing strength and comfort.
Other members of your care team might include:
- Social Workers
- Physical, Occupational and Respiratory Therapists
Getting Palliative Care Services is Simple
To begin Palliative Care, please ask your doctor for a referral. We can help whether you are in the hospital, another healthcare setting or at home. Palliative Care is often covered by insurance and government programs.
To schedule an appointment call 207-282-3349.
For more information call our Palliative Care Program Manager Heather DiYenno, LCSW at 207-294-8791.
Advance Care Planning
- Bill Caron - President, MaineHealth: Your Life, Your Terms
- Issues That Matter/Biddeford Public Access: SMHC's Heather DiYenno and Dr. Rebecca Kowaloff discuss Advance Care Planning
- Advance Directive: Should I Have One?
- Starting a Conversation: Talking to Your Loved Ones About an Advance Directive
- Should I Receive CPR and Life Support?
- Should I Stop Treatment That Prolongs My Life?
- Should I Have Artificial Hydration and Nutrition?
- Maine Health Care Advance Directive Form
- SMHC Advance Directive Wallet Cards
The Conversation ProjectA public campaign addressing how individuals, families and systems address end of life care, offers a "conversation starter kit" and other resources: theconversationproject.org.
POLST MaineIncludes information about the implementation of the Physician Orders for Life Sustaining Treatment (POLST) program in Maine.
- Center to Advance Palliative Care: getpalliativecare.org
- TED Talk - Lucy Kalanithi: What Makes Life Worth Living in the Face of Death?
- Issues That Matter/Biddeford Public Access: Robert Picone and SMHC's Dr. Rebecca Kowaloff discuss the benefits of Palliative Care
- Values Worksheet
- SMHC Oncology
Where You Can Reach Us
We provide hospital consultations at:
SMHC Medical Center
1 Medical Center Drive
Biddeford, ME 04005
We provide office consultations at:
SMHC Internal Medicine
46 Barra Road
Biddeford, ME 04005
To schedule an appointment call 207-282-3349.For more information call our Palliative Care Program Manager Heather DiYenno, LCSW at 207-294-8791.
Learn about the full range of services offered by MaineHealth Care at Home.