Laura-Wiggins-and-Jennifer-Currin-8-09World Hospice and Palliative Care Day is October 12, 2013. As pioneers in this field in our community we will continue to dispel the following inaccurate perceptions:

MYTH: Having hospice and palliative care means you will die soon.
FACT: Hospice and palliative care is not just for the end of life. It is a holistic approach that includes caregiver support, spiritual care, bereavement and much more.
MYTH: Hospice and palliative care is just for people with cancer.
FACT: All those who are diagnosed with a chronic life-limiting illness can benefit from hospice and palliative care.
MYTH: Hospice and palliative care only manages pain through the use of addictive narcotics.
FACT: Hospice and palliative care is whole-person care that provides psychosocial and spiritual care along with pain and symptom management.

Hospice and palliative care are essential for any national health care system to fully care for those with the most serious chronic illnesses. Palliative care is for all persons with limited life expectancy no matter what their disease or age. Palliative care is safe, effective and promotes dignity, comfort, and support.  Find out more about our Steward Center for Palliative Care program here.

In addition to better integration of hospice and palliative care into health care, the global hospice and palliative care community is stressing the need for:
• More training for health professionals and carers;
• Improved access to pain and symptom management medications;
• The inclusion of hospice and palliative care into existing health policies;
• Opportunities for older people to be involved in decisions around their care.

For more myths we are dispelling for the 2013 WHPC Day, please visit