Palliative Care

What is palliative care?

Palliative care is a type of care devoted to relieving pain and suffering by providing physical, psychological and spiritual comfort to patients who have complex or challenging problems associated with a serious illness. Palliative treatment eases the physical and emotional distress associated with the disease.

Any acutely ill patient may be a candidate for palliative care when the focus of the care turns from cure to comfort. Palliative care begins at diagnosis and continues throughout the course of the disease, and can be provided in addition to treatment. Palliative care is provided by a multidisciplinary team, which may include doctors, nurses, dietitians, social workers and chaplain.

Baptist Cancer Center offers one of the nation's few hospital-based palliative care programs for terminally ill patients. Palliative care services include:

  • Aggressive pain and symptom management
  • Assistance in completing life plans which address decision-making for health care choices
  • Interventions directed at decreasing family and caregiver stress from serious illness
  • Coordination of health care services to ensure alignment with the patient's choices

What is hospice?

Hospice, like palliative care, is a special way of caring for people with a terminal illness by meeting the physical, emotional, social, and spiritual needs of patients and their families. The difference is that palliative care begins at the diagnosis, and can continue alongside treatment, while hospice care is received near the end of life.

Hospice is not a place, but a philosophy of care focused on comfort care rather than curative care and the belief that life should be lived to the fullest through the last months, days, and hours of life.

What is home care?

Home health care is a service provided by Baptist in which skilled nurses, therapists, and other medical team members provide temporary rehabilitative and curative care for patients in the comfort of their own homes. At Baptist Home Care, you can receive that same expert care you would receive in our facilities in your own home where you feel most comfortable.