Palliative Care Services

Since 2006, palliative care has been a medical specialty certified by the Board of Directors of the United States. Still, the comfort-centered nursing practice has been around for hundreds of years. The hospice movement has produced palliative care.

Nowadays, 80% of hospitals with 300 or more beds provide palliative care specialists or palliative care teams to work with other doctors of patients to address the physical, social and spiritual consequences of severe illnesses and their treatment and care options.

What is Palliative Care?

Palliative care refers to care that can relieve symptoms caused by illness or injury. Compared with curative care that aims to cure diseases, palliative care aims to make the patient more comfortable.

Is Palliative Care the same as hospice care?

No, although both palliative care and hospice care can resolve symptoms, according to the patient’s doctor’s estimation.

Hospice care is only applicable during the last six months of life. Hospice care instead of curative treatment; from diagnosis to the entire curative treatment, patients can get palliative treatment at any time.

Whereas, Palliative care is discussed in the context of serious diseases,

  • Chronic, progressive lung disease
  • Kidney disease
  • Chronic heart failure
  • HIV AIDS
  • Progressive neuromodulators
  • Cancer

called “discussion goals.”

Learn more about the differences between palliative care and hospice care >

It focuses on the nature of treatment and the possible and impossible outcomes of treatment options.

The purpose of palliative care is to provide information to patients and family members to determine their goals and desired results,

What is the goal of Palliative Care?

Palliative care goals include,

  • Align the treatment results with the patient’s values ​​and preferences
  • Improve the quality of life of patients and their families
  • Reduce pain and discomfort
  • Reduce emotional distress, anxiety, or depression
  • Assist in safety, mobility, and equipment
  • Spiritual counseling
  • Empower patients and caregivers to make decisions that suit them

Who are the members of the Palliative Care team?

Palliative care is usually provided by a professional team very similar to the interdisciplinary hospice team. Clinical evaluations and nursing discussions are typically provided by physicians, nurse practitioners, and RNs. Sometimes, social workers and pastors are also involved.

What are the benefits of Palliative Care?

Palliative care provides relief in many ways. Pain, fatigue, and loss of appetite, nausea/vomiting, and lack of sleep can be relieved through palliative treatment, whether it is through medication, nutrition, deep breathing, or acupuncture.

For patients and families struggling to cope with severe diagnoses, palliative care can resolve symptoms associated with depression, anxiety, and phobias through employment counseling, support groups, family meetings, etc.

What does Palliative Care include?

Palliative care begins with a dialogue to determine the patient’s symptoms, needs, and medications that may relieve symptoms. For some patients, providing termination medications that can cause side effects is the palliative treatment option. Drug-independent methods can also be used to meet the needs of patients, such as specialized nutrition or breathing exercises. To get more relief, the

palliative care team can use complementary therapies to address specific symptoms. The specifics of palliative care vary from case to case because treatment is designed to meet the patient’s unique needs and tolerate discomfort. The palliative care team communicates with patients regularly to determine the severity of their pain and other symptoms. Based on this information, they will evaluate the appropriate treatment plan together.

When patients cannot communicate or self-report pain or other annoying symptoms, the nursing team will rely on pain assessment tools and clinical judgment to relieve symptoms.

How long can you receive Palliative Care?

Palliative care can be carried out at any time in life, for any duration, and can be carried out together with curative care. Hospice care (including palliative care) aims to provide comfort and dignity during the last six months of the patient’s life.

Studies have shown that the early initiation of palliative care has a positive impact on the treatment received by patients and their families, the understanding of pain, and even the satisfaction of patients with survival. Hospice patients who choose to terminate hospice care services can continue to receive palliative care.

Talk to your Healthcare provider about Palliative Care.

For patients and families facing concerns other than the disease itself, members of the Melodia palliative care team can assist in solving problems and help them find resources to solve financial, legal, employment, transportation, and housing problems. Whether your belief is your anchor or feels that it has abandoned you, even if you have no religious background-palliative care can solve any spiritual problem according to your culture and traditions.

Palliative care clinicians are first trained to listen to patients’ and families’ needs, goals, concerns, and problems. They take the patient’s feelings and subjective pain seriously and skillfully conduct dialogues to discover unresolved issues to provide a basis for a comprehensive patient-centered care plan.

Palliative care is effective in improving the quality of life. When the symptoms are under control, and you feel someone is listening, you will feel better and live better. Palliative counseling can reduce health care costs because it can help you feel good, choose to leave the hospital, and refuse tests or treatments that are not in line with your goals.

How does Melodia handle Palliative Care?

At Melodia, palliative care is first tailored by an interdisciplinary team to meet the needs of patients. The unit can work with newly diagnosed patients as well as those struggling with efficacy. Some palliative care team members may be board-certified in hospice and palliative care; others range from pastors to social workers.

Providing patients with palliative consultation can provide timely and specific information to help patients and their families understand the benefits of palliative medicines and help doctors and other interdisciplinary team members provide the most appropriate care.

Suppose the patient’s symptoms worsen and cannot be treated with conventional palliative care. In that case, Melodia can provide services 24/7 to transfer the patient to a higher level of care with the support of crisis nurses around the clock until the symptoms are under control. If the symptoms are particularly severe, Melodia can transfer the patient to the hospitalized hospice department for in-depth symptom management until they are ready to go home.

Would you like to learn more about how palliative care compares to hospice care?