Palliative Care

Palliative Care as defined by the Carmelite Sisters for the Aged and Infirm

Palliative Care seeks to provide relief from the five domains of pain that all persons experience when faced with a debilitating diagnosis. Palliative Care is not reserved for those who are strictly dying; it is for anyone who is diagnosed with a serious or chronic illness and it begins at the time of admission. Palliative Care allows each resident to receive the appropriate treatment that brings him/her comfort and the best possible care. Palliative care can be combined with curative care or with less aggressive care. Palliative care is not the same as Hospice or End of Life care, which is reserved for those who are clearly dying.

What is Palliative Care?

The goal of palliative care is to bring comfort to and support all those who are admitted to St. Patrick’s Manor. Palliative care begins upon admission and continues throughout a resident’s length of stay. Every person admitted is assessed in the different areas of pain. Care is provided through the prevention, assessment, and treatment of physical, psychiatric, emotional, familial, and spiritual pains. The intensity of palliative care increases as the disease process progresses, with the emphasis on one aspect of care or another changing, as patient/resident needs dictate. All residents being admitted into the Home will receive Palliative Care. Palliative is not curative but can be combined with curative care, or a less aggressive curative approach. It is not dependent on prognosis and is provided throughout each residents stay, in nursing, or rehabilitative care. It is provided at the same time as curative and life prolonging treatments.

Who provides palliative care?

Palliative care is health care provided by an interdisciplinary team, including members of the entire health care team – it includes but is not limited to nursing, social work, pastoral care, counseling, environmental services, nutrition, and rehabilitation specialties. The focus of Palliative Care is to maintain a person’s optimal function with addressing the suffering for those facing a serious life-threatening, debilitating illness and entering a facility. Palliative Care provides support for the best possible care for both residents and families.

Is Palliative Care the same as hospice?

All Hospice Care is Palliative Care, but all Palliative Care is not Hospice Care; it is a matter of timing. Hospice Care or End of Life Care, is care to relieve pain and ease suffering in the five domains of pain and is provided to those who are clearly dying. It focuses on the individual needs of each person, is provided when curative and life-prolonging treatments are futile. The goal of Hospice Care is to provide the best quality of care for each resident. Hospice care always provides Palliative Care, by paying special attention to the five domains of pain and is implemented when a person is actively dying. A cure or aggressive treatment is considered futile and not pursued.