Palliative Care For Seniors, Care Givers and Families

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What is Palliative Care?
Palliative Care vs. Hospice Care
Costs and Funding Information
Caregiver’s Guide to Palliative Care
Indications and Contraindication related to Palliative Care
Certification and Training for Services
Nationwide Variations of Service
Other Relevant Resources

Palliative care provides patients with relief from the symptoms, pain, and stress of a serious illness. The objective of this form of medical care is to improve the quality of life for the patient and the patient’s family through ease of living, and in home improvements such as walk in tubs, stair lifts, assisted toilets, and other fixed improvements. The New England Journal of Medicine reported in 2010 that seriously ill patients who received palliative care experienced less depression, reported improved quality of life, and survived an average of 2.7 months longer than those who did not receive palliative care.

What is Palliative Care?
Palliative Care Center: WebMD provides users with health information about a variety of topics, including palliative care.
What is Palliative Care?: MedlinePlus answers this question with a detailed explanation.
Palliative Care: The National Hospice and Palliative Care Organization sets standards for this type of treatment.

The World Health Organization defines palliative care.
Medline Plus provides resources to those seeking information regarding palliative care.
The National Cancer Institute outlines the meaning of palliative care and answers frequently asked questions regarding this form of care.
The Center to Advance Palliative Care posts their definition of palliative care.

Palliative Care vs. Hospice Care
The National Caregivers Library provides an analysis of the differences between hospice and palliative care.
Get Palliative Care describes the difference between hospice and palliative care.
The National Hospice and Palliative Care Organization describes hospice.
Hospice and Palliative Care: A Comparison: The Public Broadcasting System (PBS) has published an article comparing hospice and palliative care.
Palliative Care vs. Hospice: An information sheet comparing these two types of serious illness care.
What’s the Difference Between Hospice and Palliative Care?: An article from that differentiates palliative care from hospice care.
Medical Coding: Hospice Care vs. Palliative Care: The Society of Hospital Medicine’s article on understanding how medical personnel should code these two treatments differently to ensure appropriate reimbursement.
The National Hospice and Palliative Care Organization’s FAQs on Hospice.

Costs and Funding Information
Caring Connections explains some of the benefits and costs of palliative care.
The American Academy of Hospice and Palliative Medicine lists several different funding opportunities for people seeking palliative care.
The Center to Advance Palliative Care helps hospitals estimate the cost of implementing a palliative care program.
In-Home Palliative Care Allows More Patients to Die at Home, Leading to Higher Satisfaction and Lower Acute Care Utilization and Costs: A report on the Kaiser Permanente’s home-based palliative care program.
The Wall Street Journal: Article titled “Palliative Care Gains Favor as It Lowers Costs.” provides guidance on understanding hospice and palliative care, including information on cost.
Palliative Care Cost Savings Calculator
Evidence on the cost and cost-effectiveness of palliative care: A literature review.
Ascension Health Cost Savings Calculator for Palliative Care: An article outlining the use of Ascension Health’s cost savings tool.

Caregiver’s Guide to Palliative Care
Next Step in Care’s guide to hospice and palliative care for family caregivers.
Guide to Hospice and Palliative Care
Get Palliative Care’s set of links for information on various illnesses associated with palliative care.’s help guide for caregivers.
Family Caregiver’s Guide to Hospice and Palliative Care: An online guide from the Rehabilitation Institute of Chicago to assist caregivers.
Right at Home helps caregivers take care of their families through palliative care at home.
The Massachusetts Institute of Technology provides a guide for end of life care and at home care.
The American Heart Association posts information on how to perform palliative care for someone after a stroke.


Indications and Contraindications Related to Palliative Care
WebMD’s resource for helping patients with serious illnesses determine if palliative care is appropriate.
The University of Rochester Medical Center discusses palliative care and when it might be beneficial.
Medscape produced an article discussing the use of palliative sedation.


Get Palliative Care shares general referral criteria for palliative care.
Fraser Health lists symptoms for those experiencing life threatening illnesses.
Signs and Symptoms of Approaching Death: A resource for caregivers of someone undergoing palliative care.
The World Health Organization provides a guide for symptom management.
Get Palliative Care offers a series of questions to determine whether palliative care should be considered.


Certification and Training for Services
The Center to Advance Palliative Care (CAPC) provides a list of different certifications and licenses for palliative care.
The CAPC lists training programs and seminars for palliative care.
The National Hospice and Palliative Care Organization offers information on physician certification.
Hospice and Palliative Care Specialty Certification: Information from the Board of Chaplaincy Certification Inc.
National Board for Certification of Hospice and Palliative Nurses
Hospice Nurse Training, Degree and Certification Options: provides options for receiving hospice nurse certification.
The American Academy of Hospice and Palliative Medicine has resources to help individuals prepare for certification exams in palliative care.
Global Directory of Education in Palliative Care: A reference from the International Association for Hospice and Palliative Care.

Nationwide Variations of Service
The Center to Advance Palliative Care provides an overview of the growth of palliative care programs by region.
A State-by-State Report Card on Access to Palliative Care in Our Nation’s Hospitals
In the Journal of Palliative Medicine, the authors share the results of a 2008 study designed to examine the variation of palliative care programs across the United States.
American Medical News: Article titled “More Hospitals Start Palliative Care Programs.
Analysis of US Hospital Palliative Care Programs: 2010 Snapshot
Palliative Care Services: Solutions for Better Patient Care and Today’s Health Care Delivery Challenges: A joint paper from the American Hospital Association and the Center to Advance Palliative Care on the status of palliative care in 2012.
Kaiser Health News shares an article on the growth of palliative care programs, including growth by U.S. state.
Top Five Hospital Palliative Care States Outlaw Assisted Suicide: An article from The Center for Bioethics and Culture Network.

Other Relevant Resources
The Coleman Foundation is supporting the expansion of palliative care programs.
The Journal of the American Osteopathic Association’s study on various types of palliative treatments.
National Palliative Care Research Center