When the doctors asks for Palliative Care assistance, the Palliative Care nurse visits with the patient and family to help develop a plan of care that is based on the patient's wishes and needs.
A "team approach" is then taken with the Palliative Care nurse, doctors, nurses, social workers and chaplains to assist with the plan of care. This care could consist of finding relief for pain, helping with decisions and providing spiritual support.
Palliative Care helps through all stages of illness. It is best introduced early in your care, although it can begin at any time during the course of an illness.
No. Hospice Care is meant specifically for those approaching the last stages of life, while Palliative Care is appropriate for any stage of a serious illness.
To begin Palliative Care, ask your doctor for a referral to Palliative Care. A doctor's order is required to begin this service.
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