WASHINGTON – The House of Representatives unanimously passed the Palliative Care and Hospice Education and Training Act this week.
Congressman Tom Reed (R) says the legislation aims to create programs to train the next generation of hospice and palliative care providers, educate patients about the benefits of hospice and palliative care, and expand research in these fields.
“I witnessed the benefits of hospice and palliative when caring for my mother, and it is an issue that strikes close to my heart,” Reed said. “This bill will ensure our aging loved ones have access to the proper and comfortable care they deserve as they reach those crucial final days with their family.”
“Not only will quality of life be improved, but hospice care lowers health care cost making this legislation a win-win we should all support.”
Reed says the workforce training section of the bill will ensure education centers, curricula, and teachers expand interdisciplinary training in palliative and hospice care and establish programs to attract and retain providers.
The education and awareness section, Reed says, will provide for a national campaign to inform patients, families and health professionals about the benefits of palliative care and the services that are available to support patients with serious or life-threatening illness.
Finally, the enhanced research part will direct NIH to use existing authorities and funds to expand palliative care research to advance clinical practice and improve care delivery for patients with serious or life-threatening illness, the congressman explained.
The bill passed with 296 bipartisan cosponsors and endorsements from 54 national organizations.