If you have a serious illness or chronic health condition that is not well-managed, PIH Health Palliative Care can work with you to have a better quality of life. This service focuses on managing symptoms so you feel better in body, mind & spirit; allowing you to participate in the things you enjoy.
Benefits of Palliative Care
You may benefit from palliative care if you have complex medical needs or any serious condition such as cancer, organ failure, or chronic pain. Palliative Care will work with you to:
- Improve physical symptoms, such as nausea, pain, shortness of breath or treatment related side effects
- Decide what treatments you do and don’t want
- Improve communication among your doctors and nurses
- Better understand your illness
- Cope with the impact of a chronic condition
- Talk about your feelings and wishes with you and your loved ones
- Provide spiritual and emotional support
- Navigate health care and community resources
- Make advance directives. This is a legal document that outlines your wishes for your health care treatment and allows you to identify a trusted family member or friend to temporarily act as your agent if you are unable to communicate your wishes
Your Palliative Care Team includes:
- Providers such as Doctors, Nurse Practitioners and Physician Assistants
- Clinical Social Workers
What to Expect
Your Palliative Care Team will assess your needs and work with you and your doctors to make sure your medical care matches your goals. You can also ask palliative care specialists to help make plans for your future care – Advance Directive and POLST.
Your Palliative Care Team understands that your illness affects both you and those you love. You can trust your team to help you and your family get the support and guidance you need to improve your quality of life.
When to Get Palliative Care
You can receive palliative care at any time during a serious illness or chronic condition while continuing to receive medical treatment to stop or slow your disease. Palliative Care is an additional medical service to help support you and your family. It does not replace your primary care doctor or any of your specialists.
Facing the Last Stages of Life
This is a booklet produced by PIH Health for patients and their loved ones to help address questions and feelings that arise when someone is confronted by serious illness. It provides some additional information about Palliative Care services as well as information on other topics for individuals and family members who are facing difficult decisions. Download the book by visiting PIHHealth.org/FacingLastStages