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Palliative Care at Jefferson Hospital

Palliative Patient and Family Support Services

A Life Affirming Program

The goal of Palliative Care is to prevent and relieve suffering and to support the best possible quality of life for patients and their families, regardless of the state of the disease or the need for other therapies. Services are available to our inpatients that have been a serious or chronic illness and their families.

Palliative Care affirms life by supporting the patient's and family's goals for the future, including their hopes for cure or life prolongation as well as their hopes for dignity throughout the course of illness, the dying process and death.

Palliative Care is both a philosophy of care and an organized, highly structured system for delivering care.  It expands traditional medical treatments to include to goals for enhancing quality of life for patients and family, optimizing function, helping with decision making and providing opportunities for personal growth.  As such, it can be delivered concurrently with life-prolonging care or as the main focus of care.

To request a palliative care consult, call 412.469.7074.


Palliative Care will:

  • Assist patients with chronic illness to live with the best quality of life that they can, and provides support to their caregivers.
  • Be provided in conjunction with all other curative treatments.
  • Help address symptoms that the patient may experience, such as anxiety, depression, nausea, pain, etc., enabling the patient to focus on family, relationships and interests.
  • Utilize a team approach to the care of the patient-family unit by using the disciplines of Medicine, Psychology, Social Services, Spiritual Services and Nursing.

How to get Palliative Care

Patients can be referred to Palliative Care by their Primary Attending Physician or their families can request a consult.  All patients are evaluated within 24 hours of the consult request.

To request a palliative care consult, call 412.469.7074.


Collaborative Care

Our program will work with your primary physician to make suggestions for your care for:

  • Symptoms of pain, nausea, shortness of breath, fatigue, and other distressing symptoms.
  • We can assist in determining personal treatment goals and choosing among treatment options.
  • Support for resolving questions and conflicts between patients/families and physicians concerning goals of care, DNR orders, and treatment requests.
  • Problems related to emotional and spiritual suffering.
  • Assist with prognostication and plans for discharge from the hospital.
  • Empowering patients to make their own decisions

To request a palliative care consult, call 412.469.7074.


Palliative Care Team

Palliative Care Services at Jefferson Hospital are led by Uzma Khan, MD, a board certified Palliative Care physician.  She is assisted by the Palliative Care team comprises from the disciplines of psychology, nursing, occupational and recreational therapy and spiritual services.  Together they work to enhance the patient’s experience of living with a chronic illness.

To request a palliative care consult, call 412.469.7074.