Hospice care focuses on the care, comfort, and quality of life of a person with a serious illness who is approaching the end of life. Palliative care is specialized medical care for people living with a serious illness, such as cancer or heart failure.
At some point, it may not be possible to cure a serious illness, or a patient may choose not to undergo certain treatments. Hospice is designed for this situation. The patient beginning hospice care understands that his or her illness is not responding to medical attempts to cure it or to slow the disease's progress.
Hospice provides comprehensive comfort care as well as support for the family, but, in hospice, attempts to cure the person's illness are stopped. Hospice is provided for a person with a terminal illness whose doctor believes he or she has six months or less to live if the illness runs its natural course.
Patients in palliative care may receive medical care for their symptoms, or palliative care, along with treatment intended to cure their serious illness. Palliative care is meant to enhance a person's current care by focusing on quality of life for them and their family.
Palliative care is a resource for anyone living with a serious illness, such as heart failure,chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, cancer, dementia, Parkinson's disease, and many others. Palliative care can be helpful at any stage of illness and is best provided soon after a person is diagnosed.
What are palliative care and hospice care? (2021). National Institute on Aging. http://www.nia.nih.gov/health/what-are-palliative-care-and-hospice-care
This guide was created for patrons looking for general consumer health information. These resources are for informational purposes only and should not be used as a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. For questions related to advice, diagnosis, or treatment please contact a licensed medical provider.
Below are some of the suggested databases for locating scholarly articles pertaining to hospice and palliative care.
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