Palliative or Hospice Care? Understanding the Similarities and Differences

University of Cincinnati, OH, USA.
Rehabilitation nursing: the official journal of the Association of Rehabilitation Nurses (Impact Factor: 1.15). 03/2010; 35(2):60-4. DOI: 10.1002/j.2048-7940.2010.tb00032.x
Source: PubMed


With advances in health care and medical technology, the focus of medical care has been on curing. As people live longer, the possibility of experiencing chronic and life-limiting disease not only increases but also spurs the ethical question "Is length of life or quality of life most important?" Palliative care may be confused with hospice care, as both focus on symptom management and improved quality of life for those with chronic life-limiting disease. A better understanding of each healthcare option is needed for appropriate and timely patient referral. The purpose of this article is to identify the similarities and differences between these two options, clarify when referral is appropriate for hospice or palliative care services, and discuss the nurse's role in caring for patients with chronic disease.

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    ABSTRACT: Palliative care began in the UK hospice movement in the late 1960s and has rapidly developed in many countries since. In some, it has become a fully recognized specialty with comprehensive training programs and recognized expertise in areas such as pain and symptom control. It is important to examine the formative influences and characteristic clinical expertise in palliative medicine. This article considers some of the conceptual, practical, and administrative challenges that have been faced in an effort to establish palliative medicine as a discrete field of specialized practice from a US perspective. We also comment on current issues in regard to education and research, and development of comprehensive palliative care programs in the United States.
    The American journal of hospice & palliative care 02/2011; 28(1):52-8. DOI:10.1177/1049909110393724 · 1.38 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Purpose Commonly used terms such as “supportive care,” “best supportive care,” “palliative care,” and “hospice care” were rarely and inconsistently defined in the palliative oncology literature. We conducted a systematic review of the literature to further identify concepts and definitions for these terms. Methods We searched MEDLINE, PsycInfo, EMBASE, and CINAHL for published peer-reviewed articles from 1948 to 2011 that conceptualized, defined, or examined these terms. Two researchers independently reviewed each citation for inclusion and then extracted the concepts/definitions when available. Dictionaries/textbooks were also searched. Results Nine of 32 “SC/BSC,” 25 of 182 “PC,” and 12 of 42 “HC” articles focused on providing a conceptual framework/definition. Common concepts for all three terms were symptom control and quality-of-life for patients with life-limiting illness. “SC” focused more on patients on active treatment compared to other categories (9/9 vs. 8/37) and less often involved interdisciplinary care (4/9 vs. 31/37). In contrast, “HC” focused more on volunteers (6/12 vs. 6/34), bereavement care (9/12 vs. 7/34), and community care (9/12 vs. 6/34). Both “PC” and “SC/BSC” were applicable earlier in the disease trajectory (16/34 vs. 0/9). We found 13, 24, and 17 different definitions for “SC/BSC,” “PC,” and “HC,” respectively. “SC/BSC” was the most variably defined, ranging from symptom management during cancer therapy to survivorship care. Dictionaries/textbooks showed similar findings. Conclusion We identified defining concepts for “SC/BSC,” “PC,” and “HC” and developed a preliminary conceptual framework unifying these terms along the continuum of care to help build consensus toward standardized definitions.
    Supportive Care Cancer 03/2012; 21(3). DOI:10.1007/s00520-012-1564-y · 2.36 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: The purpose of this study was to gain insight into how a brief clinical observation encounter contributed to students' experiences in an interdisciplinary palliative care course. This course was required of all graduate nursing students and was available as an elective for medical and other healthcare professions students at a healthcare sciences university. The students were required to spend approximately 8 to 12 hours attending interdisciplinary team meetings or accompanying a team on rounds and patient visits.The students' summary narratives of their observation experience were analyzed in this qualitative study that focused on six categories of feedback: (1) patients' and families' reactions, (2) communication issues with patients and families, (3) how the palliative care team speaks with the patient and family, (4) communication within the interdisciplinary team, (5) students' reflections, and (6) students' suffering.This study demonstrated that a clinical observation activity can be a valuable introduction to palliative care principles for healthcare students in an interdisciplinary course. Students benefited from gaining insight into family/practitioner communications regarding difficult issues, interdisciplinary roles and cooperation, and application of palliative care principles to clinical practice. Further research is required to identify appropriate interventions to deal with student distress resulting from such early career clinical encounters.
    Journal of Hospice and Palliative Nursing 06/2012; 14(4):274-281. DOI:10.1097/NJH.0b013e3182491539 · 0.44 Impact Factor
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