Specialized Care During Serious Illness

Palliative Care

Temecula Valley Hospital offers our patients and their families a support system and team approach to help prevent and relieve suffering and provide quality of life care. This program is called palliative care. Palliative care focuses on pain and symptom management, information sharing, advanced care planning, psychosocial and spiritual support, coordination of care and, if needed, bereavement counseling.

Palliative care is not hospice; however, patients and their families are able to utilize it in conjunction with hospice. There is no time limit for palliative care services and the program can be concurrent with curative treatment. Palliative care is also capable of preparing patients and their families who are not ready medically or psychologically for hospice. The emphasis is on symptom interventions with improved quality of life outcomes. There is more attention to assessment and documentation of pain.

Patients are generally referred to our palliative care services if they have a chronic, life-limiting illness and one of the following:

  • The patient is progressively losing function or weight despite best medical therapy
  • The patient needs increasing medical resources with no improvement in quality of life
  • The patient has requested no further measures to reverse current or future medical problems, such as antibiotics for pneumonia

Palliative care has shown to be effective when dealing with cancer, heart disease, pulmonary disease, dementia, liver disease and kidney disease.

What Does Palliative Care Include?

  • Patient and family interviews
  • Family conferences
  • Goal setting
  • Care plan development
  • Conflict management
  • Discussion of ethical Issues
  • Post-discharge coordination of care

Temecula Valley Hospital is dedicated to providing patient centered, family sensitive care. The palliative care program is just one aspect of this continuing service.