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Palliative Care in Chronic Illness

Currently, contemporary health care systems are poorly designed to meet their palliative care needs. As a consequence, many people with chronic illnesses either fall between the gaps or receive inappropriate or ineffective care. The delivery of sub-optimal care contributes to increased health care costs and causes unnecessary suffering, especially when clinically futile treatments are administered or symptoms are poorly managed. In addition, increasing access to care provides a conundrum in withdrawing and withholding treatment. This chapter explores a range of palliative care issues for people suffering from illnesses other than cancer and provides discussion of the implications for policy, practice and research.

Contents include

  • Integrated, coordinated models of palliative care for non-malignant conditions
  • A palliative approach
  • Why there is a need for an integrated, palliative approach to chronic illness?
  • Patient needs
  • What are the issues related to service expansion?
  • Prognosis and advanced care planning.
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Author / Editor Biographies

RN, BA, MEd, PhD and FRCNA.
Patricia Davidson is Professor and Director of the Centre for Cardiovascular and Chronic Care, a collaborative venture of the University of Technology Sydney, Curtin University and St Vincent's Hospital Sydney. Patricia is experienced in the palliative care in heart failure and is strongly committed to developing integrated collaborative models of palliative care. She is currently leading a program of research focusing on improving end-of- life care for individuals with both malignant and non-malignant conditions through effective communication and symptom management.
RN, BN, PhD and MRCNA.
Jane L Phillips is Professor of Palliative Nursing in the Cunningham Centre for Palliative Care Sydney and The University of Notre Dame Australia. Jane has extensive experience in palliative care nursing and has undertaken extensive work to implement a palliative approach to care in residential aged care. She is actively involved in clinical and research projects that facilitate targeting and tailoring palliative care approaches to the needs of individuals with life-limiting illnesses.

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