Palliative Care Services

What is Palliative Care?

If you or a loved one are faced with a serious illness, palliative care provides a higher level of medical support. This support offers relief from the symptoms and stress associated with your disease. This family-centered approach is beneficial alongside curative treatments to improve quality of life, help you better understand treatment options, and manage any symptoms associated with your condition.

Palliative care complements your doctor’s plan for curative care. It enhances your quality of life by providing important comfort measures, pain and symptom management tools, and emotional support. Side effects that commonly accompany aggressive treatments include stomach distress, shortness of breath, physical and mental exhaustion, and muscle spasms. In close consultation with your primary care physician, palliative care nurses assist in reducing the duration or severity of these side effects, making coping with your disease a more manageable experience.

Reducing the symptoms associated with a complex medical diagnosis often helps patients tolerate more aggressive curative treatments and makes day-to-day life more enjoyable. When symptoms are properly managed, you can focus more on spending time with loved ones and enjoying life because emotional and physical distress feel less cumbersome.

Advanced care planning involves making important decisions about what might come while living with a complex illness. Practical help in managing paperwork, connecting with community support organizations, and understanding your options makes this process easier and helps ensure your goals and values are honored as you make these impactful decisions.

Who Benefits from Palliative Care Services?

 

At Around the Clock Home Services, our Palliative care program is designed for patients facing serious illnesses, particularly those undergoing aggressive curative treatments. Our services complement your doctor’s treatment plan and often enhance outcomes. Palliative care is beneficial for patients with conditions such as various forms of cancer, HIV, advanced liver disease, and other serious illnesses. These services can be initiated very early after diagnosis to provide support and improve quality of life.

FAQs

If you don’t see your question, please give us a call at (310) 940-0191.

Our Palliative Care services are below. If you need help figuring things out, please give us a call at (310) 940-0191.

How are palliative care and hospice care different?
Palliative care is accessible at any point in your illness and can be used alongside curative treatments. Hospice care offers the highest level of support and is appropriate when a patient has a life expectancy of six months or less if the disease follows its expected course. Most patients stop curative treatments when hospice care is put in place (this is a requirement of the program for adult patients). Both hospice and palliative care offer professional support, comfort and pain management, as well as emotional and spiritual support to enhance your quality of life.

How do palliative care and home health differ?
Palliative care is first and foremost focused on your comfort, so you can enjoy a higher quality of life. Home health is typically focused on helping patients to better manage health conditions or remain compliant with medical orders after a hospitalization, accident or illness. The educational component in palliative care is also unique, as it’s geared toward ensuring you understand your health condition and current and future treatment options. As illnesses that warrant palliative care are also often life-threatening, this program includes emotional and spiritual support. Our professional team assists in providing coping strategies to help you deal with the challenges and make informed decisions based on the outcomes of curative treatments and all that lies ahead.

I would like to continue with chemotherapy after my diagnosis of cancer. Is palliative care an option for me?
Cancer patients can often qualify for palliative care. Begin by having a conversation with your doctor to determine if palliative care is the right choice for you. In most cases, if you have difficulty managing pain or experience uncomfortable symptoms associated with your treatment, the complimentary services offered by palliative care are an ideal option to help you feel more comfortable. Palliative care makes it possible to better focus on your treatment. Many patients also find the emotional and case management support to be beneficial.

Can you explain the benefits to the family of palliative care?
Knowing you have support eases many of the burdens your loved ones may be experiencing and can help them feel confident in assisting in providing you with care. Your doctors and other professionals who may be assisting you will also benefit from the enhanced communication offered by palliative care professionals. We provide an extra layer of support which ultimately assists in improving your quality of life and the quality of life for your family members.

Is palliative care available at home?
Yes, we provide all palliative care services in the comfort of your home with professionals who visit at times that are convenient for your schedule and routines.

How often will the palliative care nurses and other professionals visit me at home?
The schedule for visits varies and is dependent upon your illness, needs, and doctor’s orders. Precise information will be available during your consultation and as we work with you and your medical team to develop a comprehensive and individualized care plan.

I have COPD and am often extremely tired. Getting out of bed is difficult. What can I expect from palliative care?
Palliative care can help to provide you with relief from your symptoms, including exhaustion. This often makes it easier to continue with treatment and resume activities that help you to enjoy a higher quality of life.

I have a good relationship with my doctor and don’t want to change. Will that be necessary once I’m receiving palliative care?
No, our team works with your doctor and values the relationship she has with you. Our palliative care services complement the care you are currently receiving and enhance communication with the medical professionals you have placed your trust in.

What is the best way to start the conversation with my doctor if I feel that palliative care might be the right choice for me?
If you have been diagnosed with a serious medical condition, begin by asking your doctor some simple questions about what comes next, what your treatment plan might look like, and what symptoms you might expect as you continue with treatment. This is a good lead-in to a conversation about palliative care. If your doctor is unsure about palliative care or lacks information about the program, call us. We’ll be happy to answer questions, provide information, and support you in making the decision that is right for you.

Beyond pain and symptom management, what other benefits does palliative care provide?
Our palliative care services provide emotional support and family support that makes it easier to enjoy a higher quality of life while you continue to seek curative treatment for your serious medical condition. Additionally, our case management services make it easier to manage paperwork and communicate with your medical team.