How can palliative care help?

The palliative care team is there to help make life easier for you, your family and carers in a variety of ways, including:

  • If you’re living at home, the team can call or visit regularly. This can reduce feelings of isolation and fear, help your carers look after you, and keep you out of hospital.
  • The team can help dispel any myths and misconceptions about advanced cancer you or your family and carers have.
  • Your care is usually coordinated by one person who communicates with the team on your behalf.
  • The team can help you to make treatment decisions and to prepare for the changes that advanced cancer brings.
  • Adjustments around the house can make things easier and safer for you, your family and carers. The team can help you identify suitable equipment and aids (e.g. a shower chair).
  • The team can assist you with planning for the future, such as thinking about the type of care you may need and where you would prefer to receive care.
  • Your palliative care service may offer a number you can call for advice in an emergency at any time of day or night.
  • The team can provide emotional support – a social worker, counsellor or psychologist can help you work out your goals and how to achieve them. These goals may be specific end-of-life wishes, but can also simply involve getting the most out of each day (e.g. enjoying time with friends and family).
  • The social worker or counsellor can help you and your family deal with loss or grief. Counselling can be worthwhile to help you deal with the changes advanced cancer brings.

This information was last reviewed in April 2017
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