Patients & FamiliesPatients and their families need compassion, support and education along the health-illness continuum from a time of wellness to chronic illness to advancing illness and frailty to death. Those facing serious life-threatening illness and approaching death deserve to be treated with dignity, respect and compassion and receive care that is focused on the individual’s goals for care.
Studies show patients need compassion, acceptance, to be treated as a whole person and not to be abandoned. They need clear information that enables identification of the person they trust to make decisions when they are unable to do so and helps in the determination of goals of care.
Further, studies show people want quality end-of-life care that includes:
- Receiving adequate pain and symptom management
- Avoiding inappropriate prolongation of dying
- Achieving a sense of control
- Relieving the burden on loved ones
- Strengthening the relationship with loved ones
- Respecting the uniqueness of individual
- Providing an appropriate environment
- Addressing spiritual issues
- Recognizing cultural diversity
- Effective communication between the dying person, family and professionals
Life is full of personal choices. Education is essential to help us know our choices and share our wishes in conversations around the kitchen table with family and health care professionals.
The compassionandsupport.org website seeks to improve health literacy and help individuals make sound, informed medical decisions. This web site addresses health literacy from a functional standpoint by providing information focused what the individual needs to know and what they need to do. The goal is to improve care for seriously ill patients and those nearing the end-of-life and their families.
Yet, anyone can face sudden and unexpected serious illness or injury. Thus, we all need to become educated and plan ahead for the future. Ultimately it comes down to personal choice but the choices about what works best for an individual are best made with reliable information. What patients and families need and want is delivered by Palliative Care, an interdisciplinary care that aims to relieve suffering and improve quality of life for patients with advanced illness and their families. It is offered simultaneous with all other appropriate medical treatment.
View a List of Certified Palliative Medicine Physicians in Upstate New York
Find an ABHPM Board-Certified Palliative Medicine Physician
Find a Palliative Care Program in New York State
Find a Hospice Program in New York State