What, Exactly, is Palliative Care?

Palliative care.

We’ve all heard the term lately. But how many of us actually understand the term?

To many of us, it’s something that takes place only on hospice. To others, it’s something that’s given only to terminal patients. WRONG – on both counts!

Palliative care can be difficult to pigeon-hole. For some patients, it’s pills and traditional approaches such as chemotherapy. For others, it’s yoga, acupuncture, or meditation (perhaps to help with chemotherapy). For some patients, it’s given in hospitals or on hospice. For others, it’s given at home.

Palliative care, really, is about using pain-control to help the patient make the most out of his/her remaining life…whether it’s six months or six decades. Even doctors, in fact, often have the mistaken idea that it’s only for the terminally-ill. If doctors don’t even understand the concept, one can only imagine the mis-information and misperceptions among the patient population!

As a result, tragically, many people who could really benefit from palliative care are not receiving it.

Like hospice, palliative care takes a team approach, with doctors, nurses, social workers, and clergy working together to address emotional issues as well as medical ones…along with help in managing the nightmarish bureaucracy of the healthcare system. Perhaps because of this, some people mistake it for hospice. Palliative care may be used on hospice…BUT IT’S NOT HOSPICE!

It seems to me that doctors ought to learn more about this service, so they can recommend it to patients. And that patients should have the right to be fully informed about the options available to them!

The Elder Care Journey is filled with questions, misunderstandings, and misperceptions. And it’s easy to get lost along the way. But we can help. And we can tell you about all the options available to you.

At The Law Offices of Alice Reiter Feld & Associates, we practice Elder Law – and only Elder Law. We’ve been answering questions for South Florida families for 34 years…and we’ve helped thousands of them. And we’ve answered their questions, too, about comprehensive estate planning, wills, trusts, powers of attorney, long-term care planning, asset-protection plans, and assistance with Medicaid or the VA.

If you’ve got questions, we’ve got answers. And we’re just a phone call away.

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