Palliative Care

Clinical Services

Penn Palliative Care offers patients the best possible quality of life while managing a serious or chronic disease. The program offers patients and families additional support, unique to their needs, throughout the course of an illness.

The palliative care team addresses each patient's physical pain or symptoms and emotional and spiritual needs with the goal of comfort, stability and peace of mind. The team provides individualized care and practical solutions for problems including:

  • Anxiety
  • Confusion/delirium
  • Constipation
  • Depression
  • Emotional distress
  • Insomnia
  • Loss of appetite
  • Nausea
  • Pain
  • Shortness of breath
  • Spiritual distress

Comprehensive Palliative Care, Pain Management and Hospice Services

Penn Palliative Care's comprehensive program includes inpatient and outpatient palliative care services, home care, hospice care and pain management programs. These programs provide patients and families with extra support and the opportunity to discuss and establish the goals of care. The care team works with the patient and family to establish a plan of care, which can include aggressive treatment. Palliative care is available to patients undergoing treatment, patients enrolled in clinical trials and patients near the end of life.

Home Care and Outpatient Palliative Care

  • The outpatient program at the Hospital of the University of Pennsylvania provides palliative care and pain management services at the Palliative Care Clinic located at the Perelman Center for Advanced Medicine. 
  • The outpatient Palliative Care Program at the Abramson Cancer Center at Pennsylvania Hospital provides services to patients with a diagnosis of cancer. This full-service, multidisciplinary program complements traditional cancer therapies and treatments and is available to all patients regardless of prognosis and in conjunction with curative therapies.
  • Caring Way, a home health program administered through Penn Home Care & Hospice Services, provides home care to eligible patients who are in an advanced stage of any disease and receiving ongoing treatment.
  • CLAIM, a grant-funded palliative program for patients at home with advanced cancer, provides extra supportive care and services to patients with cancer and their families.

Learn more about Penn Medicine’s palliative care services

Inpatient Consultative Palliative Care

Penn Medicine's team of palliative care specialists at the Hospital of the University of Pennsylvania and Pennsylvania Hospital meet with and assess inpatients who may qualify for palliative care services. Inpatient consultation includes focused discussions with patients and their families on goals, pain and symptom management, and emotional and spiritual support. The team also makes recommendations for follow up palliative care after patients are discharged home or to other living arrangements.

Learn more about inpatient consultative palliative services

Pain Management

Pain, symptom management and palliative care services are offered at the Perelman Center for Advanced Medicine and the Penn Pain Medicine Center located at Penn Medicine Rittenhouse.

Learn more about pain management services

Hospice Care

Penn Medicine's home and inpatient hospice programs, including Penn Hospice at Rittenhouse, are managed by Penn Home Care & Hospice Services.

Learn more about hospice services