What to expect from Palliative Care

 

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Palliative Care is designed to improve the health and happiness of patients living with a serious illness or chronic condition. It enables patients to stay comfortable at home, while receiving care and support to address physical, emotional, nutritional, and social needs.

Since 2013, we’ve improved the well-being of more than 100,000 patients and been their trusted advocate for navigating the healthcare system. Let us do the same for you.

Life-changing care for every step of the way

The focus of Palliative Care is to provide care and support between doctor’s appointments. We do it by bringing care to the patient, whether that’s in person or virtually, to ensure they have what they need to feel better and stay in control of their illness and their care.

This is what experienced and compassionate Palliative Care looks like:

Preassessment

Before Palliative Care begins, we initiate a preassessment phone call to understand the patient’s medical history and current needs. It usually takes between 15 and 30 minutes. The patient should be ready to talk about their illness, medications, emotional health, and if any advance care planning has been started.

First visit

The first visit is the enrollment visit. The patient will meet with their advanced practice provider (APP), who will also be their main contact while receiving Palliative Care. Anyone the patient wishes to be there during this visit is more than welcome.

The APP will ask questions to better understand needs and concerns, as well as hopes and goals. It’s also an opportunity for the patient, caregiver, and loved ones to ask questions.

This visit is often 90 minutes long to allow for conversation, paperwork, and getting everyone on a first-name basis.

Personalized care plan

After the first visit, the APP will develop a personalized care plan that will serve as a guide for both the patient and the care team. It will include information about:

  • Symptom management.
  • Disease management.
  • Emotional and social health.
  • Care coordination with the patient’s doctors and specialists.
  • Communication with caregivers and family members.
  • The coordination of in-home or virtual care and support services.
  • 24/7 support.

Care team visits

Scheduled visits with the APP happen at least once a month and last about 30 minutes. With every visit, the APP will want to address all aspects of the patient’s health — from symptoms and medications to nutrition and emotional health.

During a care visit, the APP will talk to the patient and caregivers about:  

  • How to manage symptoms. 
  • How the illness may affect them in the days and weeks ahead. 
  • Nonmedical issues that may be affecting health such as nutrition, lifestyle, and family support. 
  • Mental health. 
  • Medications.
  • Treatment options.
  • How to cope with the unexpected. 
  • Goals of care.

Care visits can also include:

  • Support in navigating the healthcare system.
  • Working with the patient to ensure they are as active a participant in their care as they wish to be.
  • Meaningful conversations with patients and their loved ones around the patient's goals and preparation for the future.
  • Assistance in putting a patient’s preferences in writing by helping to complete legal documents called advance directives.

After every care visit, the APP will consult with other members of the care team, adjust the care plan as needed, and update the patient’s doctors.

24/7 support

Help, support, and answers are always only a phone call away. Patients, their caregivers, and loved ones can call anytime, day or night, when there’s:

  • A medical question.
  • A care question.
  • A need for advice when it’s thought the patient may need to go to an urgent care facility or hospital. 
  • An unexpected change in symptoms.
  • A need for emotional support.

We're here for you

Your primary care doctor, specialist, or health plan may have referred you to our Palliative Care, or you may have received mail or a phone call from us about Palliative Care.

To get answers to questions you may have and talk about how we can provide an extra layer of support for your physical, emotional, nutritional, and social needs, please call our toll-free number: 844-232-0500.

What people have to say about Palliative Care

Learn about each member of the care team