Would You Refer This Patient With Cancer to a Palliative Care Specialist? Grand Rounds Discussion From Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center

The importance of palliative care is often emphasized in the treatment of cancer and other serious diseases. However, the necessary features of such care, as well as the term “palliative care” itself, are widely debated. Here, 2 oncologists, 1 of whom is also a palliative care specialist, discuss their approaches to the care of a woman with advanced cancer.

Use this feature to:

  • Watch the interview of Ms. F, a 71-year-old woman with metastatic neuroendocrine carcinoma.
  • Consider whether you would refer Ms. F to palliative care. If so, what are the goals?
  • Consider whether palliative care can and/or should be provided by a patient's primary oncologist.
  • What is the difference between palliative care and hospice care? Are patients referred “too late” to palliative care? If so, why?
  • What are the potential benefits of palliative care? Where do the 2 consultants agree and disagree regarding how it should be provided? This is summarized succinctly at the end of the article.

Annals of Internal Medicine is the premier internal medicine academic journal published by the American College of Physicians (ACP). It is one of the most widely cited and influential specialty medical journals in the world.

Back to the May 2019 issue of ACP IMpact