Palliative care is the providing of specialized care, for patients who are suffering from the onset of serious illnesses. The primary objective is to deliver some form of relief from a variety of painful symptoms and to reduce overall stress levels. By enlisting palliative care professionals, families are able to enjoy an improved quality of life, as well as the patient.
This form of medical care can only be provided by a team of doctors, specialists and nurses who have been specifically trained. They work in conjunction with the patient’s primary care physicians and other doctors to give an extra level of support. Palliative care is appropriate for all age groups, at any time period during a serious illness and is delivered along with other forms of curative treatment.
Palliative care focuses on serious illnesses that are debilitating to both the patient and their loved ones, making it difficult to carry out daily living tasks. Cancer, cardiac disease, kidney failure, Alzheimer’s, Parkinson’s, all of these diseases can be treated with the usage of palliative care.
While the primary benefit to receiving palliative care has much to do with the management of pain and the relief of physical symptoms, there are also many benefits to be had by receiving palliative care from your own home.
Dealing with the occurrence of a terminal, serious illness places a great strain on the patient and their families. By allowing them to remain at home, they are able to enjoy familiar surroundings, continue to spend time with their loved ones, avoid lengthy hospital stays and being forced to move into assisted living facilities.
In turn, family members also experience less hardship and suffering, as they are able to maintain a close watch on their loved one, without having to trek back and forth to hospital and other medical facilities.
The benefits to palliative care can also be financial, as well as mental. Instead of paying the costs that are associated with overnight stays at the hospital, trips to the emergency room and other incidental medical expenses that are incurred.
A better quality of life for patients also lengthens survival for many patients. Patients who are in a better emotional mind state and physical state of being are much more likely to remain alive for longer periods of time. By reducing emotional and physical distress, palliative care allows patients to summon the strength they need to continue with their treatments.
Palliative care used to be regarded with skepticism, as some believed that patients were essentially trading comfort for quality of life. But with dedicated specialists who are committed to working alongside of a patient’s primary physicians and family members, palliative care is a group effort. The primary objective? To allow a patient who is severely ill to remain in a safe, familiar place, while still receiving top flight medical care.