The purpose of palliative care is to improve the quality of life for patients with a chronic and/or life-threatening illness. Our Palliative Care team includes a physician, a nurse practitioner, a licensed clinical social worker, and chaplains. The team assists patients and their loved ones in making informed health care decisions, managing symptoms, and providing physical, emotional, and spiritual support.
Our Palliative Care team also helps patients and their loved ones navigate this difficult process and understand their options for comfort or for end-of-life care.
The Palliative Care Consultation
Anyone can request a Palliative Care consultation, but an order from the patient’s physician is required. Patients are usually referred to Palliative Care in one of the following circumstances:
- After repeated hospital admissions due to chronic illness
- Declining health and a poor prognosis
- When the current treatment plan is inconsistent with the patient’s goals, or the patient refuses treatment
- When symptoms are seriously affecting the patient’s quality of life
- When he or she needs help with complex health care decisions (e.g., dialysis, feeding tubes)
- When the patient or family is considering end-of-life care options such as hospice care