Understanding Palliative Care

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At some point in a person’s lifespan, deciding on what kind of end-of-life care becomes an important topic to think about. Whether you’re approaching that stage in your life or a loved one is, hospice is something many people start to consider as they age, and when you begin to think about what kind of hospice care you or a loved one might need, you might start asking yourself what is palliative care?

While palliative care and hospice are terms that are sometimes used interchangeably, as they can both be offered for people who are looking for end-of-life medical care, it’s key to understand the differences as well as similarities.

Palliative care is a type of hospice care with the intent to improve the quality of life for people suffering from the stress of being near death due to age related illnesses, cancer, heart problems, kidney problems, or lung disease. Palliative care is also a specialized kind of medical care for people living with a serious illness that may not be near end-of-life, rather they need the extra help to cope with their disease or illness.

Choosing the right place to weather out end-of-life comfortably is probably one of the most important decisions that anyone can ever make for themselves or a loved one, which is why taking the time to do research, take tours, talk to staff, or request brochures during this time is absolutely paramount.

While most people might think that hospice is only for imminent death, anyone suffering with long term uncontrollable pain, progressively worsening shortness of breath, unresolved nausea, kidney or urinary difficulties, and difficulty swallowing may qualify for hospice care. After all, hospice is about improving the quality of life in the days that still remain, rather than waiting for the inevitable end while suffering in discomfort. The time patients have when approaching end-of-life should be spent comfortably, which can be alleviated by caring and professional staff who are dedicated to their patients’ wellness.

When it comes down to choosing hospice care, it’s no surprise that not all hospice cares are the same and no patient care is created equally. While amazing strides have been made in hospice care, there will always be room to improve.

With a hospice care facility like Glen Park Healthy Living, there is no better place to seek out quality care and comfort for you and your loved ones when approaching end-of-life. In addition to providing outstanding quality services, Glen Park Healthy Living is very well equipped with a staff that is fluent in over ten languages. Moreover, Glen Park Healthy Living is able to combine care plans, such as hospice, with its palliative care program.

The main difference between hospice and palliative care is that palliative care may incorporate curative treatments into the pain management plan or design a pain management plan of its own in addition to current treatment the patient is already receiving. By combining both types of care, a better wellness plan can be created for patients at Glen Park Healthy Living in the hope to cure any illnesses that are not terminal. Rather than focusing solely on pain management or improving quality of life, together, Glen Park Healthy Living and their patients’ doctors can come up with a better plan suited for each individual’s unique case.

Facilities such as Glen Park Healthy Living approaches all patients with this duel method of incorporating hospice and palliative care into patients’ treatment plans to better manage pain, schedule doctor’s visits, assist with emotional, spiritual or psychological needs and more. They also provide medications, coach family members to be part of the support team, and offer nutritional counseling in addition to the service provided in hospice care.