When it comes to end-of-life care, deciding between hospice and palliative care can be difficult. Both hospice and palliative care provide comfort measures for those who are facing a life-limiting illness. However, there are several key differences that should be taken into consideration when determining which type of care is right for you or your loved one.
What is Hospice?
Hospice is a specialized type of healthcare that focuses on providing comfort and support to people who are facing life-limiting illnesses and their families. Hospice care is provided by a team of specially trained professionals, including doctors, nurses, social workers, and volunteers. The goal of hospice is to provide quality of life at the end of life.
What is Palliative Care?
Palliative care is a type of medical care that focuses on providing relief from the symptoms and stress of serious illness. Unlike hospice, which is focused on providing comfort care to those with a life-limiting illness, palliative care can be provided at any stage of an illness, from diagnosis through treatment and beyond.
Palliative Care vs Hospice Goals
The primary difference between hospice and palliative care is the goals. Hospice is an end-of-life care option that focuses on providing comfort and relief from symptoms. The goal is to help patients and their families live life as fully as possible, focus on comfort rather than curative treatments and provide emotional and spiritual support.
Palliative care, on the other hand, is a specialized form of medical care for people with serious illnesses. Its goal is to improve the quality of life for both the patient and their family by providing relief from pain, symptoms, stress, and psychological distress.
Palliative Care vs Hospice Services
Hospice and palliative care both provide services like pain management, symptom management, spiritual support, and emotional support. With hospice, patients receive services from a team of caregivers including doctors, nurses, and social workers to enable them to remain comfortably in their own homes until they pass away. Palliative care offers similar services as hospice, but they are provided while the patient is still undergoing treatment. Palliative care may include treatments such as chemotherapy, radiation, or other medications to manage symptoms and improve quality of life.
Palliative Care vs Hospice Location of Services
Another difference between hospice and palliative care is the location of services. Hospice provides care to patients in their homes, nursing facilities, or other residential settings. Palliative care can be provided in a variety of locations, including hospitals, outpatient clinics, doctor’s offices, and at home.
Palliative Care vs Hospice Timeline
Hospice care is generally limited to six months, while palliative care can be provided for an indefinite period of time. Additionally, hospice patients must have a life expectancy of six months or less, while palliative care is available to people at any stage of their illness, including those who are receiving curative treatments.
When is Hospice or Palliative Care Needed?
The decision to choose hospice or palliative care for an individual depends on the specific needs of the patient. If a person is facing a terminal illness, then hospice may be the best option for them. However, if a person is still undergoing treatment and wishes to manage their symptoms, then palliative care may be more beneficial.
Hospice and Palliative Care at Unique Hospice
At Unique Hospice, we provide both hospice and palliative care. Our team of experienced professionals is here to provide comfort, support, and relief from pain and symptoms, regardless of whether you or your loved one are in need of hospice or palliative care. Contact us online today or call (626) 335-7077 for more information about our services and how we can help you.