Palliative FAQs

Does Care Partners provide palliative care in my area?

Care Partners serves families throughout the Portland area and Washington County. To confirm we provide service in your area, please visit our Service Area page.

What is palliative medicine?

Palliative medicine is a medical sub-specialty provided by doctors who offer palliative care for people who are seriously ill. Palliative care relieves suffering and improves quality of life for people of any age and at any stage in a serious illness, whether that illness is curable, chronic, or life-threatening.

What's the difference between palliative care and hospice care?

Palliative care is whole-person care that relieves symptoms of a disease or disorder, whether or not it can be cured. Hospice is a specific type of palliative care for people who likely have 6 months or less to live. In other words, hospice care is always palliative, but not all palliative care is hospice care.

Who provides palliative care?

Palliative care is provided by an interdisciplinary team that may include a doctor who specializes in palliative medicine, a nurse, pharmacist, social worker, dietitian, and volunteers.

What does a palliative doctor do that's different from what my other doctors do?

Your other doctors focus on your general health or treating your disease or condition. Palliative doctors concentrate on preventing and alleviating suffering, improving your quality of life, and helping you and your loved ones cope with the stress and burden of your illness.

Shouldn't all my doctors be concerned with alleviating my suffering and improving my quality of life?

Yes, of course. But palliative doctors have special training and expertise in pain management and symptom control, and specialize in helping patients and their families cope with the many burdens of a serious illness, from the side effects of a medical treatment to caregiver stress to fears about the future. Palliative doctors can assist you with difficult medical decisions, helping you weigh the pros and cons of various treatments.

If I receive palliative or hospice care, will I still be able to see my personal doctor?

Absolutely. Your palliative doctor coordinates care with your other doctors and helps you navigate the often-complex healthcare system.

If I agree to palliative care, does that mean I'm "giving up?"

Not at all. The goal of palliative care is to make you comfortable and help you achieve the best possible quality of life. You can have palliative care while you are undergoing treatments that may cure or reverse the effects of your illness. In fact, palliative care can help you cope with aggressive treatments by getting your pain and symptoms under control to help you fight the disease.

Does Care Partners have a non-discrimination policy?

Care Partners complies with applicable Federal civil rights laws and does not discriminate on the basis of race, color, national origin, age, disability, or sex. Care Partners does not exclude people or treat them differently because of race, color, national origin, age, disability, or sex.

Care Partners…

  • Provides free aids and services to people with disabilities to communicate effectively with us, such as:
    • Qualified sign language interpreters
    • Written information in other formats (large print, audio, accessible electronic formats, other formats)
  • Provides free language services to people whose primary language is not English, such as:
    • Qualified interpreters
    • Information written in other languages

If you need these services, contact the State of Oregon Civil Rights Division.

If you believe that Care Partners has failed to provide these services or discriminated in another way on the basis of race, color, national origin, age, disability, or sex, you can file a grievance with:

State of Oregon Civil Rights Division
800 NE Oregon Street, Suite #1045
Portland, OR 97232
(971) 673-0764, TTY: 711
crdemail@boli.state.or.us
Fax: (971) 673-1384

You can file a grievance in person or by mail, fax, or email. If you need help filing a grievance, the State of Oregon Civil Rights Division (CRD) is available to help you.

You can also file a civil rights complaint with the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, Office for Civil Rights, electronically through the Office for Civil Rights Complaint Portal, available at https://ocrportal.hhs.gov/ocr/portal/lobby.jsf or by mail or phone at:

U.S. Department of Health and Human Services
200 Independence Avenue, SW
Room 509F, HHH Building
Washington, D.C. 20201
1-800-368-1019, 800-537-7697 (TDD)

Complaint forms are available at http://www.hhs.gov/ocr/office/file/index.html

Gratitude…

I couldn’t have done it without their guidance and support…

"I was always somewhat afraid of hospice because that was a sure sign of the end. But, -- I couldn’t have done it without their guidance and support. Support both before the end and after the end. After that final day, I’m still receiving needed support. Thank you for your help and all your wonderful angels."

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