Friday, July 12, 2013
Joyce Dobbertin, MD, DC and Mary Ready, MD were recently board certified in Palliative Care through the national organization American Academy of Hospice and Palliative Medicine. They will be seeing patients in the NVRH Palliative Care office, which is located in the North Country Otolaryngology and Audiology suite in the Richard A. Bloch building on Hospital Drive in St. Johnsbury.
Drs. Ready and Dobbertin have spent a great deal of time and energy preparing for the board certification. Some of their greatest teachers are their patients and their families, and they continue to learn constantly. Significant time was also spent in courses and reading.
NVRH has had a long time commitment to Palliative Care, and Palliative Care plays a key part in the hospital’s mission. On behalf of their patients and loved ones, Drs. Dobbertin and Ready will provide a number of services to patients:
- relief from pain and other uncomfortable symptoms.
- assistance in making difficult medical decisions.
- coordination of care with other health care providers and help in navigating the often complex health care system.
- guidance in making a plan for living well, based on patient needs, concerns and goals.
- emotional and spiritual support and guidance.
- connection to resources in the community that may be helpful to patients and their family.
- referrals for complementary therapies such as massage, reiki, meditation and guided imagery.
Palliative medicine prevents and lessens suffering and is for people of any age, and at any stage in an illness, whether the illness is curable, chronic or life-threatening. Palliative Care may help patients recover from illness by relieving symptoms such as pain, anxiety or loss of appetite, as they undergo sometimes difficult medical treatments or procedures, such as surgery or cancer treatments.
Hospice is a type of Palliative Care that ensures that a patient’s final months of life are as good and fulfilling as they can be. Hospice is about comfort care which includes dignity and quality of life. Hospice care is determined by a Palliative Care physician, primary health care provider, the patient, and their loved ones and normally is decided when a patient has six months or less to live. Both Drs. Ready and Dobbertin describe hospice care as “providing a quality of life that allows one to live comfortably until the end.”
The opening of the NVRH Palliative Care Service “will be of tremendous benefit to our patients. Both Dr. Ready and Dr. Dobbertin’s certification signifies a real commitment to treating patients and their families with great dignity,” stated Lory Grimes, Director of Physician Practices.
NVRH Palliative Care Services accepts referrals from primary and specialty healthcare providers.