Cambia Health Foundation Announces $1.8 Million in Grants to Increase Nationwide Access to Palliative Care

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Cambia Health Foundation today named the 10 recipients of a two-year, $180,000 grant through its annual, national Sojourns Scholar Leadership Program.

Cambia Health Foundation
Nearly two-thirds of Americans have had a personal or family experience with palliative care, end-of-life care, or hospice care; however, only half of those respondents say they were prepared for the experience.

Cambia Health Foundation today named the 10 recipients of a two-year, $180,000 grant through its annual, national Sojourns Scholar Leadership Program. The innovative program promotes palliative care workforce development by funding research, clinical, educational or policy projects. In addition, national leaders will mentor the Sojourns Scholars, further broadening their learning and leadership development opportunities.

In palliative care, a team of doctors, nurses and others provides an extra layer of support for people with serious illness. The goal is to improve quality of life for the patient, family and/or caregiver. By advancing palliative care quality, awareness and workforce development, Cambia Health Foundation furthers the Cambia Cause: serving as a catalyst to transform health care to be more person-focused.

The 2015 class of Sojourns Scholars spans the nation, representing Massachusetts, Missouri, New York, North Carolina, Oregon, Pennsylvania, Washington and Washington, D.C. Their projects will build on the groundbreaking work of the 2014 inaugural class to improve care for patients of all ages facing a variety of serious illnesses.

“Our first class of Sojourns Scholars in 2014 gave us confidence that the future of palliative care is in good hands,” said Peggy Maguire, president and board chair of Cambia Health Foundation. “Our excitement continues with this second cohort, given the remarkably talented group of individuals receiving the grant this year. Palliative care has gained traction as a vitally important practice area that could touch the lives of every one of us, either as patients or as caregivers.”

Millions of Americans are diagnosed with serious and chronic illness. They, their families and caregivers could benefit from palliative care, but the need outpaces awareness and availability. Nearly two-thirds of Americans have had a personal or family experience with palliative care, end-of-life care, or hospice care; however, only half of those respondents say they were prepared for the experience. Cambia Health Foundation’s work to develop palliative care leaders and workforce helps create the awareness and access to this specialty care.

”These grants are career-changing opportunities for exceptional physicians and nurses who are future leaders in palliative care,” said Dr. Anthony Back, co-director of the Cambia Palliative Care Center of Excellence at the University of Washington. “The Sojourns Scholar Leadership Program is creating the next generation of leaders who will shape innovations, policies, and systems to improve the quality of care for individuals living with serious illness and their families.”

The Sojourns Scholars will gather in Portland to be officially recognized at the 2015 Sojourns Awards and Palliative Care Summit on Oct. 29, 2015.

Learn more about the 2015 Sojourns Scholar Leadership Program Grant recipients: Sojourns Scholars Profiles

From Massachusetts:
● Rachelle Bernacki, MD, MS, Dana Farber Cancer Institute/Ariadne Labs, best practices for communication in serious illness
● Zara Cooper, MD, Brigham and Woman’s Hospital, palliative care needs of older adults undergoing surgery
● Jennifer Tija, MD, University of Massachusetts, health systems culture change around advanced care planning discussions

From Missouri:
Dulce Cruz-Oliver, MD, CMD, Saint Louis University, Missouri’s first Hospice and Palliative Medicine fellowship and first outpatient palliative care clinic

From New York:
Corita Grudzen, MD, NYU School of Medicine, a new, national emergency medicine communication model for palliative care

From North Carolina:
Thomas LeBlanc, MD, Duke University School of Medicine, palliative care for patients with blood cancers

From Oregon:
Seiko Izumi, RN, Ph.D., Oregon Health & Science University School of Nursing, enhancing nursing role and competency in advance care planning

From Pennsylvania:
Jennifer Walter, MD, Ph.D., MS, The Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia, train interprofessional teams to talk with parents of patients in the pediatric Cardiac Intensive Care Unit

From Washington, D.C.:
Deborah LaFond, DNP, PPCNP-BC, Children’s National Health System, educate bedside clinicians, including nurses, social workers, child life specialists and chaplains, to provide primary palliative care for pediatric patients

From Washington:
Daniel Lam, MD, University of Washington, integrate palliative care into routine care delivery across an entire dialysis provider system at Northwest Kidney Centers

Sojourns Scholar Leadership Program National Advisory Committee

  • Randy Curtis, MD, M.P.H, Director, University of Washington Palliative Care Center of Excellence
  • Patricia Davidson, PhD, MEd, FAAN, Dean, the Johns Hopkins School of Nursing
  • Betty Ferrell, PhD, M.A., F.A.A.N., F.P.C.N., Director and Professor, City of Hope
  • Diane Meier, MD, Director, Center to Advance Palliative Care
  • Steve Pantilat, MD, FAAHPM, SFHM, Director of UCSF Palliative Care Program, University of California at San Francisco

About Cambia Health Foundation
Based in Portland, Oregon, Cambia Health Foundation is the corporate foundation of Cambia Health Solutions, a total health solutions company dedicated to transforming the way people experience health care. Cambia Health Foundation awards grants in three program areas: palliative and end-of-life care through the Foundation’s signature program, Sojourns; Transforming Health Care; and Children’s Health. Since its inception in 2007, the Foundation has funded more than $25 million in grants to support these causes. Through Sojourns, Cambia Health Foundation strives to advance patient- and family-centered care that optimizes quality of life by anticipating, preventing and treating suffering. The Foundation is committed to: improving access to and quality of palliative care beyond the hospital setting through increased use of technology and expansion in nontraditional settings and rural areas; facilitating an open dialogue about end-of-life issues; strengthening the workforce to meet increased consumer demand; and recognizing leadership, innovation and inspiration in palliative care. Learn more at http://www.cambiahealthfoundation.org or follow us on Twitter.

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Lisa Honebrink
Cambia Health Foundation
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