Palliative Care
Palliative care is defined as "relieving or soothing the symptoms of a disease or disorder." Many people mistakenly believe this means you receive palliative care only when you can't be cured. Actually, palliative medicine can be provided by one doctor while other doctors work with you to try to cure illness.
What is Palliative Care?

Palliative care (pronounced pal-lee-uh-tiv) is specialized medical care for people with serious illness. This type of care is focused on providing relief from the symptoms and stress of a serious illness. The goal is to improve quality of life for both the patient and the family.

Palliative care is provided by a specially-trained team of doctors, nurses and other specialists who work together with a patient’s other doctors to provide an extra layer of support. It is appropriate at any age and at any stage in a serious illness, and it can be provided along with curative treatment.

The palliative team:

  • Provides relief from pain and other uncomfortable symptoms.
  • Assists you in making difficult medical decisions.
  • Coordinates care with your other doctors and helps you navigate the often complex health care system.
  • Guides you in making a plan for living well, based on your needs, concerns, and goals for care.
  • Provides you and your loved ones emotional and spiritual support and guidance.
Benefits of Palliative Care

You may worry that agreeing to palliative care means giving up hope for a cure. That is not the case at all. In fact, palliative care can help you cope with aggressive treatments by getting your pain and symptoms under control to help you fight the disease. For instance, one study found patients with cancer who receive palliative care were more likely to complete chemotherapy treatment and a reported a higher quality of  life than those who didn’t receive palliative care.

Palliative care helps you achieve quality of life as you define it. The palliative doctor and team explains the pros and cons of your treatment options so you can make informed decisions about how you want to manage your illness and symptoms, and live your life. They also can provide emotional and spiritual support and resources. In other words, they are concerned about you, not just your illness.

These things make sense intuitively, but they also translate into tangible benefits. There is a wealth of evidence that people who receive palliative care (including hospice care when a cure is out of reach) are highly satisfied, as are their loved ones. Studies show palliative care:

  • Controls pain
  • Controls common symptoms of serious illness such as fatigue, anxiety, shortness of breath, nausea, depression, and constipation
  • Improves quality of life
Additional Information
Palliative Care Mission

We at Putnam County Palliative Care will promote dignity and quality of life for patients with serious, often life-threatening illnesses, and support for their families. To advocate and support informed decision-making and ensure that patient and family wishes and goals are identified and respected. To apply evidence-based practice individualized to each patient in the relief of symptoms. To provide an interdisciplinary approach to the care of patients and their families.

Palliative Care Admissions Criteria

In order to be admitted into the Putnam County Palliative Care:

  • Appropriate at any age and at any stage of a life-limiting or life-altering illness.
  • Can be provided along with treatments that are meant to cure.
  • Offered in long term care facilities, assisted living facilities and at home.
Disease Types and Palliative Care
  • Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis (ALS)
  • Alzheimer’s Disease
  • Breast Cancer
  • Bone Marrow Transplant
  • Cancer
  • Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease (COPD)
  • Colon Cancer
  • Congestive Heart Failure (CHF)
  • Dementia
  • Eosinophil Associated Disease (EAD)
  • Head and Neck Cancer
  • Huntington’s Disease
  • Kidney Disease
  • Leukemia and Lymphoma
  • Liver disease
  • Lung Cancer
  • Multiple Myeloma
  • Multiple Sclerosis
  • Ovarian Cancer
  • Pancreatic Cancer
  • Parkinson’s Disease
  • Prostate Cancer
  • Pulmonary Fibrosis
  • Sickle Cell Anemia
  • Stroke
Need more information? Check our list of FAQ’s.
Follow the link for more external resources on Palliative Care.
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