Supportive Care (formerly known as Palliative Care) specializes in the relief of the pain, symptoms and stress of serious illness. The goal is to improve quality of life for patients and their families. Supportive care is appropriate at any point in an illness. And it can be provided at the same time as treatment that is meant to cure.
Supportive care is not a one-size-fits-all approach. Patients have a range of diseases and respond differently to treatment options. A key benefit of supportive care is that it customizes treatment to meet the needs of each individual person. Supportive care aims to relieve symptoms such as pain, shortness of breath, fatigue, constipation, nausea, loss of appetite and difficulty sleeping. Overall, supportive care offers patients the best possible quality of life during their illness. Supportive care benefits both patients and their families. The team helps patients and family make medical decisions, choose treatments and makes sure they get reliable information.