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The Vital Connection Between Nursing and Palliative Care for Healthy Aging


Having a goal of healthy aging is likely one of the top priorities for most Americans for numerous reasons. Everyone wants to experience the highest quality of life and retain as much independence as possible. A strong relationship between nursing and palliative care can help reach this goal and allow patients to lead a fulfilling life while addressing various health problems. This paper will focus on how the two related concepts contribute to healthy aging and discuss their advantages and key elements of care. 

The Vital Connection Between Nursing and Palliative Care for Healthy Aging

Understanding of the Terms Nursing and Palliative Care 

Nursing care is a system that allows assessing, planning, and providing medical services from trained professionals to patients across ages. Nurses perform and supervise various affiliated procedures and provide a considerable amount of medical and emotional support to help patients heal both physically and mentally. In contrast, palliative care is a specific approach that focuses on the relief of symptoms and focuses on reducing pain. Such care is suitable for individuals with chronic diseases and people suffering from serious illnesses and their family members. Palliative care tries to address emotional, psychological, and spiritual issues that often contribute to a perceived deterioration of health. 

In many cases, nursing care and palliative care overlap, such as when nurses assist in long-term treatment and help patients experience end-of-life care. Caring professionals pass on their knowledge and skills to those with more specific training and support patients in all possible ways. Nursing care remains vital in palliative care to guarantee patients receive the comprehensive attention they need to feel better and free from pain. 

The Role of Nursing in Palliative Care 

Symptom Management

 Managing symptoms consistently is a nursing responsibility for many professionals. In palliative care, nurses are supposed to administer medications, observe each possible side effect, and try as many techniques to alleviate or eliminate pain and other types of discomfort. Patients should be provided with services aimed at making their lives easier, more comfortable, and to do that, nurses should do their best to ensure that they understand and recognize the symptoms in the first place. 

Emotional and Psychological Support 

Many nurses also have to prove emotional and psychological support to their patients and their families. Obviously, nurses are not allowed to visit a psychologist but still, this is their responsibility to provide good counseling services, to promote communicative environments and assist with the emotional part of the illness. In certain conditions, it is hard to prove all of these things at once so even in such cases, nurses should try to do as much as possible to provide a fine and communicative environment for the surrounded people. 

Coordination of Care 

The interdisciplinary research conducted in the sphere of palliative care often involves the cooperation of many nurses, doctors, psychologists, and even the patients’ spiritual advisers. To ensure that the palliative care is truly comprehensive, all these categories of people interact and get in touch with the nurses who organize, support, and motivate everybody to do as much as needed to help the patient. In certain cases, patients know what needs to be done but are not in good communicative and associative form to do that. Under such conditions, only coordinated support may result in certain improvements. 

Support for Families 

Past studies have shown that family members need support more than the patients themselves, owing to the significant stress and emotional strain they experience when caring for the patient. Nurses help in addressing the issue by providing support and guidance to the families.

Future Care Discussions 

Nurses listen attentively and are in the best position to assist patients and families in the discussions about future care. They can also facilitate these discussions to ensure that patients’ critical wishes are appropriately documented and respected. Nurses also ensure that the patients are able to consider and make decisions regarding advanced directives, end-of-life care and the other legal and ethical considerations which may come up along the way. 

End-of-Life Care 

Arguably, the general focus of care at the end of a palliative care program could not be on a cure, but on the dignity, comfort and freedom from pain for the patient. One of the last roles that a nurse plays in the living life of the patient is to ensure that the process is as painful and comfortable as possible. They do this by managing pain and other symptoms and providing emotional support to the patient and the family through the process. After a patient passes on, nurses continue with the support by offering bereavement support to the families of the deceased patient by helping them cope with the loss and return to normalcy. 

The Benefits of Nursing and Palliative Care for Healthy Aging

Enhanced Quality of Life 

Nursing and palliative care improve the general quality of the lives of older people, helping them live more comfortably. They address the physical, emotional and psychological issues, therefore, enhancing the thoroughness of the care provided, while managing the chronic conditions and symptoms and enhancing the quality of life. 

Promoting Independence 

One of the goals of counseling, health promotion and cultural and social computer solutions for aging adults is to enable them to make better decisions regarding their health and have a more independent stay. This autonomy is necessary to retain some level of dignity in life. 

Reduced Hospitalizations 

When the symptoms of a terminal condition are under control, there are fewer hospitalizations and therefore reduced healthcare costs. 

Ways to Integrate Nursing and Palliative Care with Other Health Services 

Nursing and palliative care provided to patients are highly coordinated. Nurses, as well as palliative care teams, work with patients’ primary care providers and other health services to ensure that the needs of the patient are being addressed comprehensively. Some patients receive care through the other services as a result of their long-term medical conditions, disability, or terminal illness. The other health services provide community-based palliative care programs that offer the best ways to integrate care services for the patients. All these services are provided at the patients’ home, and they do not have to worry about the problems associated with travelling or costs associated with transfers. 

Modern Nursing and Palliative Care Considerations 

The development in technology has played a significant role in palliative care practices. The future of nursing and palliative care combines innovation driven by medical care technology and advanced practices in the care of the patients. The continuous interaction and better understanding of the two are integrated to offer quality nursing and palliative care. With the use of advanced technologies in telemedicine and personalized medicine, patients are going to benefit from increased access to palliative care services. Nursing and palliative care patterns and services have progressed and changed dramatically over the past few years. Different efforts to increase nursing and palliative care have been put in place, such as increasing the number of educated palliative care professionals and incorporating palliative care in primary health care systems. Both nursing care and the palliative team are supposed to help answer various questions asked by the patients and their families concerning nursing and palliative care. The main goal of serving these two is by making life better for the patients. 


Q1. Can palliative care be provided at home?

Yes, palliative care can be provided at home. Community-based programs and home visits by palliative care teams enable patients to receive care in their own homes. 

Q2. What services are included in nursing and palliative care?

There are provided services such as pain and symptom management, emotional and psychological support, advanced care planning, coordination of care, and end-of-life care. 

Q3. Is nursing and palliative care covered by insurance?

Most insurance plans including Medicare and Medicaid provide coverage for nursing and palliative care. 


There is a strong relationship between nursing care and palliative care that can help debilitated patients feel better and live a fulfilling life. Nursing and palliative care should become integral components of healthy aging. Both care approaches provide multidimensional support, fulfilling the needs of elderly individuals in physical, emotional, and spiritual aspects. By integrating nursing and palliative care, we will be able to improve the quality of life of older adults. We will ensure that the late years of their life will be overshadowed with comfort and dignity. Nursing in palliative care is essential because nurses and other nursing professionals can apply their expertise and provide the necessary care to manage serious illnesses and maintain overall well-being.