The Interdisciplinary Centre for Palliative Care Medicine at Stauferklinikum Schwäbisch Gmünd, teaching hospital of the University hospital of Ulm, was opened in May 2007. The Palliative Care unit is part of the Clinic of Internal Medicine, Department of Hematology, Oncology and Palliative Care Medicine. I
n 2011, the Ambulatory Palliative Care Team (SAPV) was founded and provides ambulatory palliative care for a region with more than 300,000 inhabitants. The multidisciplinary multiprofessional palliative care team is embedded in the DKG-certified oncology centre of Stauferklinikum Schwäbisch Gmünd, a community-based hospital with a capacity of approx. 400 beds.
The palliative care ward consists of 5 bedrooms with the option to add another 2 rooms if required. Therefore 8-10 patients can be cared for in single- and double-bedrooms. All rooms have a separate bathroom and access to a balcony. A separate living room and a kitchen can be used by patients and relatives.
The ambulatory and hospital-based interdisciplinary palliative care team coordinates palliative care for all in- and out-patients. The emphasis is on immediate symptom-orientated treatment such as pain relief, malnutrition, dyspnoea, etc.. In addition, tumuor-directed treatment including chemotherapy and radiotherapy is offered if indicated.
The palliative care team consists of 5 palliative care doctors, 8 palliative care nurses, psychologists, art-therapists, clerical services, physiotherapists, social workers, nutritional services and hospice volunteers. The centre has the full education/training authorization for Palliative Care and Hematology/Medical Oncology.
Expert palliative care for in- and out-patients:
- Symptom-orientated treatment
- Medical oncology
- SpecialiSed pain management
- Nutritional services
- Emergency medical care
- Hospice volunteers
- Art therapy (music + painting programmes)
- Clerical services (spiritual + religious ceremonies)
- Social workers
- SpecialiSed ambulatory palliative care service (SAPV) and "Brückenpflege".
Supportive and Palliative Medicine
All cancer patients with metastastic or non-curable disease are discussed in the weekly tumour boards and are seen by a specialised palliative care doctor at the time of primary diagnosis. Early integration of palliative care 24 h/7 days a week, emergency call for in- and out-patients
Special services for patients and relatives include: psychological support, clerical services, social workers, art therapy, hospice service and tumour-specific therapy: invasive therapy, radiotherapy.