Palliative Care Always


Stanford School of Medicine



We are excited to have you join our community of participants interested in improving quality of life for patients and families experiencing serious illness.

This online, case-based course is designed for health care practitioners who work in cancer care. We believe that incorporating the principles of palliative care—symptom management, goals of care and effective communication—into clinical practice can improve the quality of life for our patients and their support systems. We also believe palliative medicine can improve quality of life for clinicians. We’ve designed this course to demonstrate how palliative medicine integrates with oncology care, and to help you develop primary palliative care skills. Our hope is that you feel increasingly equipped to support the diverse needs of your patients and your own needs as a healthcare provider.

Palliative Care Always features presentations from a variety of Stanford palliative medicine clinicians, interwoven with the video scenes from the journey of a fictional patient experiencing colon cancer, from diagnosis across the life span.

By the end of the course, participants will be able to:

  • Describe the scope and role of palliative care as part of a patient and family’s care plan
  • Describe the components of an interdisciplinary treatment plan for physical, psychosocial, and spiritual care, including screening, assessment and management of patient needs
  • Describe the issues around transitions in care (e.g. survivorship or hospice transition) and key needs for patients and caregivers at these times
  • Clinicians: Practice basic symptom and distress management and determine when to involve palliative care specialists for extra support
  • Respond to common caregiver needs throughout the care continuum
  • Practice effective communication skills with other healthcare providers, patients, and their families; including responding to emotion, coaching in self-management of symptoms and distress, and discussing goals of care

Who Should Enroll

This course is ideal for healthcare providers and volunteers working in oncology care, and patients and families living with cancer. No prior experience with palliative medicine or cancer care is necessary.

Thank you for your interest. The course you have selected is not open for enrollment. Please click the button below to receive an email when the course becomes available again.

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