Parklandís Palliative Care Program Aims to Empower Those with Serious Disease
Dallas, TX — Palliative care is specialized medical care for people with serious illness, and is provided by a specialy trained team of caregivers to work in conjunction with patients' other doctors to offer an additional layer of support. Started in 1999, the Palliative Care program at Parkland Memorial Hospital was one of the first in the state of Texas, and continues to be one of the largest, both in Texas and in the nation.
Dr. Elizabeth Paulk, MD, Medical Director of Palliative Care at Parkland and Program Director of the Palliative Care Fellowship Program at UT Southwestern Medical Center, believes that while learning that a loved one has a serious illness can be terrifying, referral to palliative care services should not be.
“Even health professionals can feel overwhelmed when providing care for a family member,” said Adelfa Lorilla, MD, of Seagoville, TX, who is now full-time caregiver for her husband Ricardo, who is gravely ill with COPD. “The Palliative Care staff at Parkland has given us so much help and comfort over the past two years,” said Dr. Lorilla. “They make sure we have everything we need and are like family to us.”
Palliative care and hospice services are often confused in the public’s mind though their programs are not the same. The goal of their palliative care services according to Parkland is to improve quality of life for both patients and families.
“People have to remove the idea that palliative care will be the end of everything for them,” said Dr. Lorilla. “No, it is here to help you live longer and better. We are very thankful for them.” Continue>
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