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Indian J Palliat Care. 2017 Oct-Dec;23(4):403-408. doi: 10.4103/IJPC.IJPC_90_17.

Estimation of Need for Palliative Care among Noncancer Patients Attending a Tertiary Care Hospital.

Author information

1
Department of Preventive and Social Medicine, Jawaharlal Institute of Postgraduate Medical Education and Research, Puducherry, India.
2
Department of Medical Oncology, Jawaharlal Institute of Postgraduate Medical Education and Research, Puducherry, India.
3
Department of Anesthesiology, Jawaharlal Institute of Postgraduate Medical Education and Research, Puducherry, India.

Abstract

Context:

Palliative care services, until recently, were mainly restricted to cancer patients with incurable diseases. Hence, evaluative studies of palliative care are sparse in areas other than oncology.

Aims:

To estimate what proportion of patients attending the Departments of Neurology, Cardiology, and Nephrology of Jawaharlal Institute of Postgraduate Medical Education and Research (JIPMER), Puducherry, required palliative care and to identify the palliative care needs of those patients.

Settings and Design:

This was an exploratory descriptive study conducted in the three departments of JIPMER.

Materials and Method:

There was no predetermined sample size for the study. The participants were all adult inpatients and outpatients who were in need of palliative care in the departments of Cardiology, Nephrology, and Neurology on the day of study.

Statistical Analysis:

Percentage distribution was used to analyze the categorical variables such as education, gender, age, patients in need of palliative care, and their needs.

Results:

The study showed that one in ten non-cancer patients in tertiary care hospitals may require palliative care services. Apart from issues in physical domain, a substantial proportion of participants also had issues in the psychological, emotional, and financial domains.

Conclusion:

This study highlights the need for incorporation and initiation of palliative care services in other non-cancer specialties in tertiary care hospitals to ensure holistic management of such cases. Counseling service has also to be rendered as part of palliative care since a good share of the patients had psychological and emotional issues.

KEYWORDS:

Noncancer patients; palliative care; tertiary care hospital

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