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Palliative Care

MaineHealth palliative care services help people facing serious illnesses live their lives as fully as possible. The goal is to:

  • Prevent suffering by providing care to keep you comfortable
  • Manage pain and other symptoms of serious illness
  • Coordinate communication between caregivers
  • Plan for future care needs
  • Provide emotional and spiritual support

Who provides palliative care?

Palliative care is a medical specialty that is most often provided using a team approach. The team works together to make sure that all the patient and family needs are met by providing an extra layer of support. Your palliative care team will work with your doctor and may include:

  • Physicians
  • Advanced practice providers
  • Nurses
  • Social workers
  • Spiritual care providers

When is palliative care given?

Palliative care can be provided at any stage of an illness, from diagnosis through the end of life. You can receive medical treatment and palliative care at the same time. Palliative care is often included during treatment of:

  • Cancer
  • Chronic obstructive pulmonary disease or other lung diseases
  • Heart disease
  • Neurological diseases like dementia

Pediatric Palliative Care

Pediatric palliative care is specialized medical care that meets the needs of infants, children and adolescents with serious illnesses. Not all pediatric patients that receive palliative care have terminal illnesses, but all suffer from a serious medical condition that affects their quality of life.