Palliative Care

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Palliative care: to cure sometimes, to relieve often, to comfort always.

Palliative care is the medical specialty focused on the treatment of pain, stress and other symptoms of a serious illness.

At Inova hospitals, the palliative care team assists patients and their families whether undergoing curative treatment or transitioning to hospice or comfort care. Palliative care provides an added layer of support for patients at all ages and at all stages of any serious or advanced disease, whatever the prognosis.

Palliative care improves quality of life

Palliative care treats people suffering from a wide range of serious and chronic illnesses, including:

  • Cancer
  • Cardiac disease, including congestive heart failure (CHF)
  • Lung disease, including chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD)
  • Kidney failure
  • Alzheimer's disease
  • Parkinson's disease
  • Multiple sclerosis (MS) and amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS)

Palliative care focuses on symptoms such as pain, shortness of breath, fatigue, constipation, nausea, loss of appetite, difficulty sleeping, anxiety and depression. It also helps you gain the strength to carry on with daily life. It improves your ability to tolerate medical treatments. And it helps you have more control over your are by improving communication so that you can better understand your choices for treatment.

Inova offers palliative care at all of its hospitals

Inova palliative care teams are available at every Inova hospital and are committed to improving the quality of life for people dealing with serious illnesses. Working closely with the patient's primary doctor, we provide coordinated care including:

  • Inpatient palliative care services
  • Symptom management
  • 24-hour availability
  • Inova Home Health
  • Social services support
  • Physical, psychosocial, spiritual and emotional support with board-certified physicians and specially trained staff
  • In-depth discussions with patients about their condition, their treatment options and the benefits and burdens of various options

How do I get palliative care

To receive help from the palliative care team, please ask your doctor for a referral.

We are available to provide you with assistance either in the hospital or at home. Our hospital services, inpatient unit and outpatient programs are covered by Medicare, Medicaid and many insurance plans.

Learn more

We want you to have all the information you need about palliative are and how it can help you or your loved one. This additional information may be helpful to you:


View our palliative care brochure

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