The Case for Hospital Palliative Care

Brief
Key Questions Answered
  • What exactly is palliative care?
  • What are the benefits?
  • How is the palliative care landscape changing?
Key Themes and Takeaways

Palliative care improves quality of life for both the patient and the family. It is appropriate at any age and at any stage of illness, and it can be provided along with curative treatment.

  • Palliative care teams provide counseling, manage symptoms such as pain and depression, help clarify the goals of care, and coordinate care transitions.
  • The public has expressed a growing desire for palliative care. For example, in one study, 92 percent of respondents reported that they would be highly likely to consider palliative care for themselves or their families if they had a serious illness.
  • Palliative care is growing more common. As of 2012, 61 percent of US hospitals with more than 50 beds had a palliative care team — an increase of 164 percent since 2000.
  • Palliative care saves money. According to a recent study of four New York State hospitals, palliative care consultation saved hospitals an average of $6,900 per admission.
Population Addressed
People with Advanced Illness
Level of Evidence
Expert Opinion
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