When palliative care is explained

Sunday, September 30, 2018

We saw Dr. Jason Webb (@JasAWebb) recently post this reply on Twitter when a patient declined palliative care consultation: “Wish I could be in the room when #hpm is explained.”

Friday morning, Sept 28, was the opportunity to hear discussions by Dr. David Casarett, Chief of Duke Palliative Medicine, as well as 12 different innovator teams who presented novel tools in the Duke Palliative Care toolkit at the Palliative Care Innovation Showcase.

The event followed a Medicine Grand Rounds talk by Dr. Casarett, who told us Duke Palliative Care started in 1988. The program added fellowship training in 2005. Now, 20 years since the beginning, he cited the many opportunities that lie ahead to promote primary palliative care and improve life for patients with serious illness.

Innovation presentations covered 

  • Apps to identify high-need patients and educate patients
  • Intensive communication coaching
  • Training for goals of care conversations
  • Maestro Care-based prognostic models
  • An innovative outpatient advance care planning intervention

Pearl about explaining palliative care: Dr. Webb recommends that we "frame the conversation around a need they have identified. Ex: 'We noticed that your symptoms are not well controlled & we have a team who are experts at symptom management.'"

(Picture by Nathan Gray, MD, GIM Assistant Professor of Medicine)