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The Case for Palliative Care

Nov 10, 2021

November is National Hospice and Palliative Care Month. Programs across the country are reaching out to raise awareness about hospice and palliative care. This year's theme is "It's About How You Live."

What is Palliative Care?

Palliative care is specialized medical care for people with serious illnesses. Palliative care promotes quality of life by addressing the physical, psychological, emotional, cultural, social, and spiritual needs of patients and families.

It offers:

  • Treatment of pain and other symptoms
  • Relief from worry and distress of illnesses
  • Close communication about goals of care
  • Well-coordinated care during illness transition

Palliative care brings this holistic model of care to people earlier in the course of a serious illness. Learn the differences in Palliative Care or Hospice Care.

Palliative Care and Hospice

Hospice is not a place but high-quality care that enables patients and families to focus on living as fully as possible despite a life-limiting illness. Palliative care and hospice programs provide pain management, symptom control, psychosocial support, and spiritual care to patients and their families when they are facing serious illness. These programs combine the highest level of quality medical care along with the emotional and spiritual support that families need most when facing a serious illness or nearing the end of life.

Resources and Training

The Center for Rural Health's North Dakota Rural Community-Based Palliative Care project offers virtual training, mentoring, and resources to communities.

Virtual palliative care training opportunities:


For more information, email Nancy Joyner, MS, CNS-BC, APRN, ACHPN® at