Palliative care is an approach to care for people who are living with a life-threatening illness, no matter how old they are. The focus of care is on achieving comfort and ensuring respect for the person nearing death and maximizing quality of life for the patient, family and loved ones.
Palliative care addresses different aspects of end-of-life care by:
Palliative care may also be called hospice palliative care or end-of-life care. In some cases, these terms are used interchangeably or in combination. In others, they refer to different types of services or providers. For examples of different definitions and terminology, visit the Canadian Hospice Palliative Care Association and the World Health Organization (WHO)
The field of palliative and end-of-life care includes providing care services directly to the patient, family and loved ones. It also includes the education and training of care providers, research, surveillance and advocacy. Individuals, families, communities, the private sector and governments all play important roles in the field of palliative and end-of-life care.
In this section, you will find information on palliative and end-of-life care in Canada, including information on service delivery and the involvement of the federal government. You will also find links to publications that contain information on palliative and end-of-life care in Canada as well as other related resources.