People who have been diagnosed with cancer, heart disease, AIDS, multiple sclerosis, Alzheimer’s, amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS), and a number of other serious illnesses are eligible for palliative care.
The primary goal of palliative care is to facilitate comfortable, independent living for patients to live out their last days, weeks, months, independently while also making it a lot more manageable for their families.
What is Palliative Care?
Palliative care is specialized medical care that boosts the patient’s quality of life by providing pain and symptom management to people of all ages with serious or chronic illnesses.
Palliative care has many benefits, including:
- Reduces hospitalizations
- Leads to shorter hospital stays when a patient is hospitalized
- Provides pain and symptom relief/management
- Helps coordinate care between health care providers
How to Know if You or a Loved One Qualifies for Palliative Care
You or your loved one may qualify for palliative care if any of the following are true:
- Recent serious or chronic illness diagnosis
- The illness requires pain management and ongoing care
- The patient experiencing physical pain that is not under control
- Patient (and family) having a hard time coping with the illness
- A patient has a hard time understating their illness
- The patient’s current health care team is unsure of appropriate therapy option
If you answered yes to any of the above questions, it’s a good time to contact a palliative care provider to see how to make this new chapter of life much more manageable. The main goal of palliative care is to provide comfort and peace to patients and their families.