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.