Palliative Care May Save Money and Ease Suffering

December 17, 2018

(The Washington Post) – There’s strong evidence that palliative care can improve the quality of life for terminal and chronically ill patients, while reducing emergency room visits and hospitalizations by as much as half. Studies consistently show that this curbs overall health-care costs, a benefit that appeals to managed care systems — health-care plans that receive a flat annual fee per patient, rather than getting paid according to the number of medical procedures they perform. Managed care plans such as Kaiser Permanente and the Veterans Health Administration began offering palliative care more than 10 years ago, and many others — including Sutter Health, Aetna and Blue Shield of California, have followed suit.

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