In a relatively short period of time, thereâ€™s been increasing research supporting what many health care providers have long known â€“ that comprehensive, palliative care that treats both symptoms and a personâ€™s emotional needs during a serious illness or at the end of life, can not only vastly improve quality of life, but in many cases prolong it. Dr. Steve Pantilat, Director of the Palliative Care Program at the University of California, San Francisco says while palliative care has risen, itâ€™s not high enough.
"Getting palliative care still depends largely on your doctor offering it to you or making it available. Where we need to go is to have public demand."
Pantilat likens it to the way we are born now in America â€“ not too long ago, it used to be Mom in an operating room and Dad in a waiting room. But there was a demand from patients for the birthing rooms of today.
"End of life is changing, but it will change faster and it will change better, if the public is engaged in this process as well and demands it."
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