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Resources: Palliative Care

What is Palliative Care?

Palliative care is a medical specialty supportive care for individuals with advanced illness. The focus of palliative care is to effectively manage pain and other symptoms of a serious life-limiting illness, even when the underlying disease cannot be cured.   The goal of palliative care is to provide comfort and improve quality of life.  Palliative care also provides information to help patients cope with serious physical illness and its life-changing results.

Palliative care supports you and those you love by maximizing your comfort.  It also help you set goals for your future that lead to a meaningful, fulfilling life while you get treatment for your illness.

Harbor Palliative Consultants are specialists in pain and symptom management. A Certified Palliative Care Physician, working closely with a team of experienced professionals, can help individuals better manage their symptoms.

Supportive Care for YOU

Getting Started

 

Anyone can initiate a palliative care referral, but it does require a physician’s order to be covered by insurance. Please contact your healthcare provider or Harbor Palliative Consultants and we will assist in the process for evaluation.

Setting Goals

Individuals with a serious life-limiting illness face difficult and complex choices. Harbor Palliative Consultants will work with patients and families in a respectful manner to help set goals that are designed to match their treatments in order to achieve their best quality of life.

How to Know if Palliative Care is the Answer

Palliative Care has been shown by research to benefit a person suffering from pain, stress and symptoms caused or associated with a life-limiting illness.  Medical studies also show Palliative Care referred early after a serious illness diagnosis gives the greatest benefit.  Examples may include kidney failure, advanced respiratory or cardiac disease, advanced dementia, stroke, cancer, AIDS, Multiple Sclerosis, Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis-ALS.

How to Know if Palliative Care is the Answer

Having an Advance Directive in place is a good plan for everyone.  An Advance Directive enables you to express preferences related to pain and symptom management, designate a patient advocate, choose or refuse treatment options and clarify resuscitation status.

Pain and Symptom Management

We will work with patient’s attending physician to assure that symptoms are relieved and pain is treated effectively and compassionately.

Another focus of palliative care is to enhance each patient’s quality of life. We make recommendations for treatment of symptoms such as nausea, vomiting, restlessness, constipation, shortness of breath and anxiety and depression, which often accompany a serious life-limiting illness.

Harbor Palliative Consultants Team

Harbor Palliative Consultants offer an interdisciplinary approach to care.  Our team inculdes a palliative care certified physician, nurse practitioner, and nurses.  Other professionals may include social workers, chaplains, pharmacists, dietitians, rehabilitation specialists, physical therapists, bereavement counselors and home health aides according to each patient’s needs.

More information

 

A Specialist’s Perspective
Gerald A. Harriman, DO
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A Primary Care Perspective
Kristen K. Brown, MD
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