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What are hospice and palliative medicine specialists?

Hospice and palliative medicine specialists take care of someone with a chronic illness or someone who is burdened by symptoms that are not relieved by traditional interventions. Hospice and palliative care is provided by a team of professionals, such as physicians, nurses, social workers and home health aides.
Medical professionals who specialize in palliative care have an expertise in pain management and symptom control. These providers provide holistic care and can be consulted at any stage of a serious or life-threatening illness. Palliative care specialists work as part of the healthcare team to help alleviate suffering and they help to prevent or control unpleasant symptoms, regardless if the disease or disorder is curable, chronic or life-threatening. Hospice is a specific type of palliative care for people with a disease or disorder that is, most likely, not curable or the person has decided to stop seeking curative treatments. Hospice care is always palliative, but not all palliative care is hospice care. Hospice and Palliative Medicine Specialists can help patients and families cope with stressful conditions and help people make informed decisions on their treatment options. The primary goal of hospice and palliative medicine is to help the patient maintain dignity, make informed decisions, and to achieve the highest quality of life possible.

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Important: This content reflects information from various individuals and organizations and may offer alternative or opposing points of view. It should not be used for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. As always, you should consult with your healthcare provider about your specific health needs.