What is palliative care?
Palliative care focuses on the physical, emotional and spiritual needs of people facing a serious illness, all the while assuring comfort, dignity and quality of life. Palliative care is provided simultaneously with all other medical treatments. It addresses both the patient’s and the family’s needs.
How can the palliative care team help me and my family?
Our professionally trained team of physicians, residents, nurses, social workers, case managers, dietitians, pharmacists and chaplains stand with you as you seek the answers to some of life’s toughest questions.
The specialized care includes:
- Relief of pain and symptoms such as nausea, fatigue, breathlessness, depression and anxiety
- Respect for each patient’s values and personal choices
- Assistance and support in making difficult medical decisions
- Help in ensuring patients are as comfortable and active as possible
- Coordination of care and treatment among doctors at all stages of illness
- Identifying services to support patients and families after leaving Bluefield Regional Medical Center
- Access to other complementary treatments, when appropriate
How do I know if palliative care is right for me or a member of my family?
Palliative care is an option for you at Bluefield Regional Medical Center if you are experiencing discomfort, serious illness or facing complex medical decisions. Palliative care may be especially helpful if you or your loved one:
- Have cancer, heart failure, AIDS, liver, lung, kidney problems and/or dementia
- Have pain, trouble breathing or other distressing symptoms
- Is seriously ill and facing questions about the future
- Have difficult medical decisions to make and want help thinking them through
How can I reach the palliative care team?
You, your family member or any of your health care professionals may ask your physician to consult the Palliative Care Team.
Is palliative care the same as hospice care?
No. This Palliative Care service is based in the hospital. You can receive palliative care at any time during your hospital stay and can receive all other treatments at the same time. Hospice care is generally provided at home. Typically, people in hospice decide to forgo curative treatments for their illness.
Who are the people providing the care on the palliative care team?
The palliative care team includes physicians, residents, nurses, social workers, case managers, dieticians, pharmacists and chaplains who have specialized training and expertise in helping people with serious illness.