Palliative Care

What is Palliative Care?

Palliative care is a team approach to supporting patients and their families during an advanced or chronic illness.

Palliative care is concerned with the care of the whole person. It is usually offered to patients and their families when the patient’s disease is becoming less responsive to curative treatment or has become a life-threatening disease process.

St. Joseph’s Palliative Care Team includes doctors, nurses, social workers, pharmacists and pastoral care. Other professionals such as dieticians and physical therapists are involved as needed.

The Palliative Care Team works with the patient, family and the members of the healthcare team, to help with the following:

  • Physical symptoms such as pain or difficulty breathing.
  • Emotional and spiritual well being.
  • Changing treatment needs.
  • Decision Making.
  • Developing a Plan of Care.

Why Should You Consider Palliative Care?

Your healthcare team will often suggest a referral for assistance from the Palliative Care Team when they recognize that you or your family are experiencing difficulty with your illness.

Sometimes this support is suggested when your doctor sees that the treatment you are receiving is not helping you get better.

You can ask your doctor about this special support and request a consultation for your individual needs. Your doctor needs to write an order for this service. Your physician will continue to manage your illness. The team will make suggestions that will help you decide which treatments are best for you.

An Individualized Approach

The Palliative Care Team will work with you and your family on a plan of care designed specifically for you.

The goal of Palliative Care is to give you the best quality of life by providing support for you, body, mind and spirit.

Palliative Care may be recommended for patients with any end-stage disease such as cardiac, renal, lung disease or AIDS. Patients with chronic illnesses such as Crohn’s disease, emphysema, lupus, hepatitis, epilepsy and dementia can also benefit from the Palliative Care approach.

Members of the Palliative Care Team are available Monday through Friday from 8 am to 4:30 pm.

For more information about Palliative Care, please call (304 )473.2164 or (304) 473.2139.