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North Dakota Palliative Care Task Force

The North Dakota Palliative Care Task Force is committed to improving the quality of life of those facing serious health conditions by promoting patient-centered palliative care and improving access to services. Although it is one of the fastest growing trends in healthcare, palliative care is often misunderstood. The task is set up to develop educational opportunities for providers, patients, and community members to help them clearly understand palliative care and the benefits it offers. The task force aims to increase awareness and utilization throughout the state of North Dakota to improve the quality of life of its citizens.

What Is Palliative Care?

Palliative care is specialized medical care for people with serious illnesses. It is appropriate at any age and at any stage in a serious illness and can be provided together with curative treatment; it is not limited to end of life. 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; and well-coordinated care during illness transition. It also provides care across treatment settings and support for family/caregivers; and offers a sense of safety in the healthcare system.