HOSPICE AND PALLIATIVE CARE
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03:09 PM -- Veterans Hospice and Palliative Care
Dr. Cari Levym Assistant Professor at the Denver Veterans Affairs Medical Center introduced herself and provided a handout to the committee (Attachment O). She also provided a comparison of state laws regarding health care power of attorney and advance directive legislation (Attachment P). Dr. Levi indicated that hospice care is one of the benefits veterans can access as part of their care benefits, but they can also use Medicare or private insurance. Dr. Levy described palliative care training in the medical center and spoke to additional funding that is being used to build a palliative care unit. Dr. Levy stated that the medical center was given a national grant in the amount of $1.5 for the new palliative care unit. Dr. Levy described contract hospices that the VA uses and their partnerships. She stated that veterans have special needs, especially combat veterans. Dr. Levy stated that the VA models its hospice benefit on the Medicare program, but that the system offers palliative care earlier and is able to begin building relationships with patients earlier. Dr. Levy stated that many veterans in her facility are dying in the intensive care unit.
Senator Williams stated that the next meeting will be on September 24, 2009 where the committee will have the opportunity to propose legislation. The committee adjourned.