Maryland-based Hospice of Charles County, an affiliate brand of Hospice of the Chesapeake, has developed a partnership with University of Maryland Charles Regional Medical Center to provide general inpatient care within the hospital for hospice patients as well as the seriously ill.
Patients nearing the end of life will have the option of transitioning to the general inpatient level of hospice care, when appropriate, or to transfer to the Hospice of Charles County Inpatient Center. Hospice patients receive general inpatient care when their symptoms are too severe or complex to be managed in the home setting. About 1.2% of hospice care days in 2018 were at the general inpatient level, according to the National Hospice & Palliative Care Organization (NHPCO).
“Providing the full continuum of care at the highest quality available is important for our hospital. Partnering with Hospice of the Chesapeake, now in Charles County, is an important step towards achieving that goal,” said Noel Cervino, president and CEO of UM Charles Regional. “We are excited about this new partnership and believe it will add to our ability to care for the unique needs of all Charles County residents in a way that provides respectful care.”
Hospice of the Chesapeake acquired Hospice of Charles County in October for an undisclosed amount.
The hospice provider has positioned a full-time staff member onsite at UM Charles Regional to help patients and their families navigate end-of-life and goals of care decisions.
Hospice utilization in Maryland reached 47.6% among Medicare decedents in 2018, according to NHPCO, compared to a national average of 50.1%.
“We are honored to join with UM Charles Regional to expand the type of and location of hospice care available to the residents of Charles County,” said Michael Brady, acting CEO of Hospice of the Chesapeake and Hospice of Charles County. “From our first conversations with [UM Charles CEO] Mr. Cervino and the UM Charles Regional team it was immediately clear they shared our passion for providing the highest quality care available while respecting the unique choices, cultural differences and personal goals of care.”