What is the difference between palliative care and hospice?

 

I just had a patient diagnosed with Stage 4 Liver cancer.  He had suffered from cirrhosis for many years, and had a history of alcoholism.  He had just gotten a biopsy of his liver last fall, and nothing was found.  He started having severe abdominal pain, went to the ED, and found that his lymph nodes were very large behind his liver.  He asked the doctor directly, “is it cancer?” and the doctor said yes.  He came to me, asked me to refer him to oncology and has gotten chemotherapy.  Unfortunately, they aren’t able to do much as stage 4 it metastasis, and non-operable.

I referred pt to Palliative Care, but the nurse that went out became confused and discussed the benefits of Hospice with the patient and his wife.  They said that they weren’t interested in the services, as they felt like it was “giving up” and they felt like there was still hope for the patient.  If this scenario were to occur in your line of work, and a patient asked you what the difference between palliative care and hospice was, what would you tell him?

Using 200-300 words APA format with references .

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