Baptist Health Corbin: Benefits of Palliative Care
Doctor JENNIFER SKORUPA, MD discusses how Baptist Health Corbin’s palliative care team works together to support patients with chronic, life-limiting illnesses, helping them enjoy fulfilling lives.
Benefits of Palliative Care Health Talks Transcript
Jennifer J. Skorupa, MD, Palliative Medicine:
Palliative care is a medical specialty for people with chronic or life-limiting illnesses. It is to focus on the quality of life, not quantity of life, and we help people with the support and symptoms that they need at any point during their disease process. Patients that are appropriate for palliative care services include any kind of cancer diagnosis, any kind of life-limiting illness such as congestive heart failure, COPD, or other kind of chronic conditions that, over time, we can naturally expect to deteriorate a patient’s well-being. We have an entire team that helps support the patient and the family. You get a physician or a nurse practitioner, with a nurse as well as a social worker and a chaplain, and our goal is to help patients realize where they are in the disease process to help them plan for the future and what kind of treatments they do or do not want, and to help them with any kind of troublesome symptoms, whether it be pain, nausea, constipation, trouble with their mood or anxiety or agitations. My goal is to be able at the end of every day to know that I actually truly helped somebody, and that’s why I think we all get into medicine to begin with, but really, honestly, most of my enjoyment comes from the personal day-to-day thank yous. Just being able to see the smile on somebody’s face or knowing that we were there for them in the moment.