Palliative care is specialized medical care for people with a serious illness. It is appropriate at any age and at any stage, and can be combined with curative treatment. It focuses on providing relief from the symptoms, pain, physical stress, and mental stress of a terminal diagnosis. The goal is to improve quality of life for both the patient and family.
Palliative care is provided by a team of physicians, nurses, physiotherapists, occupational therapists and other health professionals who work together with the primary care physician, referred specialists and other hospital or hospice staff to provide additional support.
Although it is an important part of end-of-life care, it is not limited to that stage. Palliative care can be provided across multiple settings including hospitals, at home, as part of community palliative care programs, and in skilled nursing facilities.
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Information taken from Colorectal Cancer Alliance.