Identifying Patients With Palliative & Supportive Care Needs

The identification of patients who have palliative and supportive care needs is one of the nurse’s responsibilities in the current healthcare system. One should understand that palliative care is not the same as the end of life care because the offered services differ from those offered in hospice. The main idea of palliative or supportive care is to promote hope and encourage control over long-term conditions that cannot be cured.

These services aim at dedicated to patients who need to live as well as possible and as long as possible. Patients with serious diseases like cancer must never stop trying to obtain a better quality of life, and community nurses participate in this process. Nurses identify these patients upon their daily living needs, symptom management, and stress reduction. In most cases, patients, as well as family members and nurses, comprehend that the disease does not respond to the chosen treatment method. Instead of waiting for death, it is highly appreciated to continue living.

Sometimes, people do not want to inform relatives or healthcare providers that they need supportive care. They rely on their independence and the desire to take everything under control. However, Healthcare Improvement Scotland informs that family presence in treatment at home is characterized by a number of benefits and the possibility of meeting psychological, social, and spiritual needs. It is not enough to manage the negative outcomes of the offered therapy or assess symptoms. Nurses and families have to predict the progress of depression and anxiety, reduce discomfort, and promote healthy lifestyle changes.

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