Palliative and End-of-Life Care Across the Continuum

Notably, a sizeable number of people do not understand the difference between palliative and end of life care. It is good to note that palliative care refers to the kind of care that is offered to patients who are facing a life-threatening disease or a medical condition. Such diseases are usually not curable and this means their reversal is not possible. This type of care therefore focuses on the control of the symptoms of such diseases. It also focuses on spiritual, social and psychological care of such patients. The goal of this type of care is to enhance the quality of life experienced by the terminally ill patients as well as their family members or loved ones. Palliative care across the continuum therefore aims at making the ailing patients as comfortable as possible even as their condition worsens as a result of suffering from an incurable disease.

It is good to mention that once a person is about to die as a result of a terminal disease or a medical condition he/she is offered end of life care. This is usually during the last years of the patient’s life. It is however worth to note that it is not always possible to predict with accuracy when a given patient will die. For instance, giving the patient a choice to die in dignity is part of end of life care across the continuum. There are also legal services that a patient might be provided with once he is about to die especially during the last six months. It then follows that end of life care can be understood as the palliative care that is offered when a patient is about to die.

The purpose of palliative and end of life care across the continuum is basically to improve the quality of life that the patient who is suffering from an incurable disease experiences. This is perhaps the main reason why majority of people think that these two medical concepts are the same. It is however worth to note that if you are writing a paper on them you should be sure to demonstrate that you understand that they are different. This is because some of the legal and ethical issues associated with palliative care are not necessarily the ones that one ought to consider when focusing on end of life care. Notably, end of life care attracts some of the most controversial ethical and legal issues.

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