If you or a loved one are facing a serious or life-threatening illness, you may be wondering what palliative care is and whether it would be right for you.

Palliative care is a type of care that focuses on relieving symptoms and improving the quality of life for people living with a serious illness. It can be used at any stage of an illness, and it is often used alongside other forms of treatment such as chemotherapy or radiation therapy.

This blog post will discuss what palliative care is, how it can help, and who can benefit from it.

palliative care

What is palliative care?

Palliative care is a type of care that focuses on relieving suffering and helping with symptom management. This specialized care will help improve the quality of life for people living with an illness.

Palliative care can be used at any stage of an illness, and it is often used alongside other forms of treatment such as chemotherapy or radiation therapy.

Palliative care aims to help people feel as comfortable as possible and improve their quality of life. Palliative care can help with pain relief, nausea, shortness of breath, stress, and anxiety.

Who can benefit from palliative care?

Palliative care can benefit anyone living with a severe illness, regardless of their age or the stage of their illness.

Some people may be more likely to benefit from palliative care than others, including those who are:

  • Experiencing pain or other symptoms that are difficult to control
  • Experiencing difficulty breathing
  • Suffering from nausea or vomiting
  • In the later stages of their illness

Palliative care can also provide emotional support for patients and their family members. There are palliative counseling and support resources for issues such as:

  • Grief and loss
  • Bereavement
  • Stress and anxiety
  • Spiritual concerns

what is palliative care

How does palliative care work?

Palliative care is tailored to meet the needs of each patient and the patient’s prognosis. A team of specialists will work together to create a care plan that addresses the patient’s physical, emotional, and spiritual needs.

Who is on a palliative care team?

Palliative care is typically provided by a team of specialists, including one or more palliative care doctors, nurses, social workers, chaplains, among other specialists. This specially trained team can help you manage the symptoms of your illness and provide support for you and your loved ones.

palliative care team

What treatments are available through palliative care?

Generally speaking, palliative care is not a treatment for the illness itself but rather for the symptoms that come with it. Common palliative care treatments include pain management, nutritional support, and psychosocial counseling. In addition, palliative care teams often work closely with hospice providers to offer end-of-life care.

Sometimes the palliative care team may provide pain medicine or other medications to control symptoms.

What if I’m already receiving treatment?

Palliative care can be used alongside other forms of treatment, such as chemotherapy or radiation therapy. Many people find that palliative care helps them to better cope with and relieve suffering from the side effects of these treatments.

If you are already receiving treatment for your illness, talk to your doctor or other health professionals about whether palliative care is a good option.

What is the cost of palliative care?

The cost of palliative care varies depending on the individual needs of the patient and the type of care required. In general, palliative care is less expensive than traditional medical care, as it is specialized medical care that focuses on symptom relief rather than cure.

Does insurance cover palliative Care?

Palliative care is often covered by insurance, but it depends on the individual plan. Check with your insurance provider to see if palliative care is covered.

Alternative ways to cover the cost of palliative care

If your insurance does not cover palliative care, other options may be available to help you cover the costs. Some communities offer programs that provide financial assistance for those who need palliative care. In addition, many hospitals and hospice services offer discounts for those who need palliative care.

Some other options for paying for palliative care:

Potential payment plans

Ask your doctor if they offer a payment plan.

Financial assistance programs

Many governmental and non-governmental programs can help with the cost of palliative care. Be sure to check with your local hospital or hospice about discounts they may offer.

Crowdfunding

Many people find that they can get help paying for care from family, friends, or the community. Talk to those close to you about what resources may be available to you.

Sell a life insurance policy.

Some people find that selling a life insurance policy is an viable financial option to pay for palliative care. Contact us for more information on how to sell your life insurance policy.

Where is palliative care provided?

Palliative care services can be provided in various settings, including hospitals, hospices, your home, or nursing homes. Talk to your doctor about the best setting for you.

How long can you be in palliative care?

The length of time a person can be in palliative care varies depending on the person’s illness. In general, palliative care is designed to provide support for as long as needed.

Tell me the difference between palliative care and hospice care?

Palliative care is a type of care that can be received at any time, even if you are not terminally ill. Hospice care is only for those expected to live for six months or less. In addition, palliative care focuses on relieving symptoms while hospice care provides end-of-life care.

holding hands with life threatening condition

What serious illnesses can be treated with palliative care?

Palliative care can be used to treat a variety of serious illnesses such as:

  • Cancer
  • Heart disease
  • Lung disease
  • Dementia
  • ALS
  • Kidney failure
  • Chronic obstructive pulmonary disease 
  • Any other life-threatening illness

Conclusion

Palliative care is a specialized form of medical care that focuses on relieving symptoms and improving the quality of life for those who are seriously ill. It can be provided in various settings, including hospitals, hospices, homes, and nursing homes. Palliative care is often covered by insurance, but other options may be available to help.

See if you qualify.

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