UnityPoint Health – St. Luke's Hospital Palliative Care Clinic

Hours of Operation

  • Monday: 9:00 AM - 5:00 PM
  • Tuesday: 9:00 AM - 5:00 PM
  • Wednesday: 9:00 AM - 5:00 PM
  • Thursday: 9:00 AM - 5:00 PM
  • Friday: 9:00 AM - 5:00 PM
  • Saturday: Closed
  • Sunday: Closed

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Palliative Care is all about you.

We are a designated team designed to help you and your family make decisions regarding a serious, ongoing medical condition. Our purpose is to focus on quality of life while considering your healthcare decisions and goals.

The Palliative Care team strives to care for you and your family as a "whole person." We work alongside you through all stages of your condition. Our care team will:

  • Help you and your family understand your illness and treatment options
  • Aim to reduce your pain and suffering
  • Improve the quality of life for both you and your family
  • Work with you, your family and your doctors to create a plan of care that meets your needs
  • Communicate this plan as you move through different healthcare settings
  • Assist you with Advance Care Planning

Meet our Palliative Care Team

Our Services

The Palliative Care team works with you through all the stages of your illness in order to improve your quality of life as well as support you and your family throughout the disease process. Our services are available for individuals with potentially life-limiting medical conditions such as but not limited to:

  • Advanced Heart disease
  • Advanced Lung disease
  • Alzheimer's disease
  • Cancer
  • Dementia
  • Kidney failure
  • Liver disease
  • Neurological diseases
  • Stroke

Once the Palliative Care team receives a doctor's order, we schedule a consultation with you and your loved ones. The purpose is to talk about your intentions and wishes. We will move with you as you enter various healthcare settings, communicating your goals with the medical staff at each location and making sure your wishes are respected and honored.

Inpatient Palliative Care

Inpatient Palliative Care works with patients who have been admitted into St. Luke's Hospital.

Once a doctor's order is received a consultation meeting will follow, then the Palliative Care team works the healthcare team on your floor to make sure you are receiving the care outlined in your plan.

Community Palliative Care

The Community Palliative Care team visits take place in the clinic or wherever you live, such as a long-term care facility, assisted living facility or at home. The goals of Community Palliative Care are to manage your pain, help you make important decisions about your healthcare goals and support your family (in your current residence).

Your illness does not always go away when you leave the hospital. That's why the Palliative Care team continues helping you manage your life along with your illness outside of the hospital. We use your care plan to guide you along a course of action while supporting you and your family.

Palliative Care will ensure your voice is heard by assisting in communication between your specialists to manage the complex decisions you must make with each.

Resources & FAQs

Resources Available as You Care for Your Loved One
  • UnityPoint Health – AbbeHealth Services – Aging Services
    (319) 398-3644

    Aging Services has a Respite Program designed to provide a break for you. Hourly rates and schedule are determined by you and the respite provider. Financial assistance may be available for eligible caregivers.
  • AARP
    (877) 333-5885
    Resource information for you. Short videos to show you how to help relatives and friends using a walker or wheelchair with transfers, bathing, etc. at www.aarp.org/nolongeralone.
  • Aging Services Caregiver Support Groups
    • Cedar Rapids Milestones: Meets the second Wednesday of each month from 3 to 4:30 p.m.
    • Milestones in Marion: Meets the fourth Thursday of each month from 3 to 4:30 p.m.
    • Co-Sponsored by Pathways in Iowa City: Meets the first and third Wednesday of each month from 1 to 2:30 p.m. at the Iowa State Extension Office (4625 Oakcrest Hill Rd SE, Iowa City)
  • Family Caregiver Alliance/National Center on Caregiving
    (800) 445-8106
    Provides information and resources for you on long-term caregiving.
  • Family Caregivers Center of Mercy
    (319) 221-8866
    A comprehensive resource for you. Services available include one-on-one interviews, caregiver coaches, companion respite, educational sessions and events, resource library, music, art, chair yoga and journals.
  • The Heritage Agency Caregiver Support Program
    (319) 398-5559
    A Family Caregiver Specialist provides information for caregivers of older adults and supports you by helping identify solutions to your unique caregiving needs and challenges.
  • Iowa State Extension Office
    (319) 377-9839, Ext. 315
    Offers "Powerful Tools for Caregivers," a series of classes designed to empower you to take better care of yourself. The "tools" learned in the six-week series benefit you by helping you reduce stress, improve your confidence as a caregiver, establish balance in your life, communicate your needs, make tough decisions and locate helpful resources.
  • Lifelong Links
    (866) 468-7887
    Lifelong Links can connect you to many of the state's information and referral resources, including Iowa COMPASS, the Iowa Association of Area Agencies on Aging, the Iowa Family Caregiver Support Program and Iowa 2-1-1. Information and referral specialists will help you identify community-based services available in your area and help you determine which programs best fit your individual situation.
  • Milestones Adult Day Health Centers
    Milestones programs are designed to enhance the lives of adults and caregivers by providing day support services in a home-like environment. The two locations are:
  • National Alliance for Caregiving
    (800) 896-3650
    Coalition of organizations focused on caregiving issues; provides a resource for ideas and helpful advice for family caregivers (www.caregiving.org/).
  • VA Caregiver Support (855) 260-3274
    If you are caring for a veteran, calling the Caregiver Support Line is a great first step to take to learn more about the support that is available to you. The Caregiver Support Line can tell you about the assistance available from the VA, help you access services and connect you with the Caregiver Support Coordinator at the VA Medical Center near you.

Where are services provided?
Services are provided in the hospital, clinic or where you currently live depending on your need. The goal of the Palliative Care team is to stay with you wherever you reside to help express your goals and plan of care.

Do I have to be dying to use Palliative Care?
No. Palliative Care is for people experiencing any stage of an ongoing medical condition. You do not have to be dying to receive a doctor's order. Often Palliative Care is best used early in an illness so decisions can be made from the start and a clear plan of action can be determined.

How can I request Palliative Care services?
A doctor's order is required to receive Palliative Care services. If you are interested in Palliative Care for yourself or a loved one, talk with your current physician or call (319) 369-7909 to receive further assistance.

What is the benefit of Palliative Care?
The healthcare system can be complex. Our team wants to ensure you receive the care you need. Palliative Care assists with communication between many specialists to ensure your voice is heard. We help you and your family cope with issues that can be quite complex.

What is the difference between Palliative Care and Hospice?
Palliative Care is for any stage of a serious illness - you do not have to be terminal. Hospice is for someone at the end of life who has been given a diagnosis of six months or less to live.

Where can I find more resources about Palliative Care?

What is Palliative Care?

Dr. James Bell, medical director for St. Luke's Palliative Care, joins Dr. Arnold to discuss what is Palliative Care, who it's for, services they provide, how it differs from Hospice care and more.