Palliative care what is it

Palliative care was developed in the 1980s for inpatients on gerontology services. They envisage another way of taking care of the patient, considering it as a whole, in order to improve his quality of life and his comfort. Patient who is terminally ill, someone with an incurable disease, for whom is palliative care intended? When should palliative care be considered? How: at home or at the hospital?

Palliative care, what is it?

Palliative care was developed with the aim of not being limited to the physical care of the person at the end of life or suffering from an incurable disease, but for the humanistic purpose of relieving it also on the psychological level, to take into account his special needs as well as those of his loved ones. In other words, we are here in a global approach of the person, which solicits multidisciplinary bodies (medical care, body care, psychological care) and offers personalized and humanized care. We adapt to the person, where until now we asked the person to adapt to the operation of the hospital service: meals, waking hours and toilets in particular.

For whom is palliative care intended: end-of-life and / or incurable diseases

One accepted idea is to believe that palliative care is exclusively intended for people who are terminally ill at the end of their life. In reality, palliative care is aimed at two categories of people:

– terminally ill people: patients with a serious illness for which the treatments have proven to be ineffective and who have no longer a long time to live;

– people suffering from a serious, progressive and incurable disease, which generates pain not sufficiently soothed by the treatments still in progress and a significant loss of autonomy.

The decision to use palliative care is collegial: it involves the patient himself, his family and all the specialists who take care of him.

What types of palliative care to choose: at home or at the hospital?

Palliative care is covered by health insurance and can be provided at home or at the hospital. It is the doctor alone who can determine the most appropriate palliative care for the patient.

– Palliative care at the hospital: they can be provided in a bed identified in palliative care, in a palliative care unit (there are 143 palliative care units in France) or in connection with a mobile palliative care team who moves to the bedside at the hospital (there are 404 mobile teams assigned to palliative care).

– Palliative home care: if the patient expresses the desire to stay at home and if his state of health does not require too much care, then home palliative care provided by a team of liberal professionals may be considered. This option assumes that the patient’s entourage is present on a daily basis to help