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posted: 7/13/2011 8:17 AM

Safety net hospital receives palliative care award

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Associated Press

CHICAGO -- A palliative care program at Chicago's Stroger Hospital has received a national award from the American Hospital Association.

Stroger is one of only four hospitals to receive the Circle of Life Citation of Honor, and the only one in Illinois.

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The award goes to programs that provide superior compassionate care for patients at the end of life or who need other types of palliative care.

This treatment focuses on relieving pain and stress, and providing comfort care.

Stroger won praise among safety net hospitals for having many patients in hospice care instead of spending their last days in a hospital intensive care unit.

Stroger's program sees more than 700 patients each year. Many are immigrants, and Stroger's team members meet with them in the hospital, in clinics and at home.

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