Palliative Care offers patients with advanced, serious or life-threatening illnesses expert pain and symptom management and improved quality of life. The Palliative Care team will assist patients as they anticipate their future health care needs and determine their needs and wishes for treatment options. The team provides education and information about the patient's illness, and offers physical, social, emotional and spiritual care.

Any patient with advanced, debilitating or chronic illness can benefit from Palliative Care. Such illnesses can include heart, lung, kidney or liver disease, dementia, Parkinson’s disease and cancer.

Palliative Care can improve a patient’s quality of life by focusing on:


  • Relieving a patient's pain and other distressing symptoms such as shortness of breath or nausea
  • Assisting with Advance Care Planning by increasing patients' knowledge of their disease and its likely progression, as well as their prognosis and options for treatment
  • Supporting family members overwhelmed by the burden of caregiving and the stress of navigating the healthcare system
  • Counseling patients and family members experiencing emotional and spiritual suffering

Palliative Medicine consultations are available at Greater Baltimore Medical Center (inpatient and outpatient Cancer Center) and at Howard County General Hospital (inpatient only), as well as at select Genesis HealthCare and Lorien Health Systems post-acute, skilled care facilities. Patients and family members can request a referral for a comprehensive Palliative Medicine visit to help them better understand their options for care and to assist with symptom management. The team works in conjunction with the medical attending team at the hospital, to develop a comprehensive plan of care taking into account the patient’s and their family’s wishes for care.

caregivers, families and physicians



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