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What is palliative care?

While some may use the terms “hospice” and “palliative care” interchangeably, they are two different methods of caring for someone facing a life-limiting illness. Hospice is a form of palliative care, and they do share some characteristics, but they are not the same.

Palliative (pronounced Pal-lee-uh-tiv) care is what’s known as “comfort care.” With expert guidance, palliative care helps alleviate discomfort and distressing symptoms while a person is undergoing potentially curative treatments, such as chemotherapy and radiation therapy. Stillwater Hospice has a robust palliative care program, with consultations at four sites across northeast Indiana, as well as in area hospitals. More than 1,500 people received palliative care through Stillwater in 2022, and we recently opened our Fort Wayne clinic on the Stillwater campus on Homestead Road.

How will you know if you might be eligible for palliative services? If you’ve been diagnosed with a chronic or life-limiting illness and are continuing treatment to address that illness and want symptom management, palliative care might be for you.

Palliative care:

  • Treats pain, anxiety, nausea, breathlessness and other symptoms
  • Provides education on disease process
  • Helps determine goals of care

Stillwater’s Palliative Care team includes physicians and nurse practitioners who work one-on-one with each patient to determine how best to tackle issues related to their illness. From initial consultation through the resolution of a person’s illness, Stillwater’s Palliative Team is here for you. Call (800) 288-4111 or visit to learn more.