Frequently Asked Questions

Hospice Care

Is palliative care the same as hospice care?

No. Hospice Care is meant to serve the patient during the last six months of their life when the burdens of aggressive treatment outweigh the benefits. In contrast, Palliative care serves the patient regardless of their prognosis or the treatment they are receiving.

How do palliative care and hospice care work together?

Patients receiving palliative care may naturally transition into Hospice Care toward the end of their serious illness.

Does OSF HealthCare offer hospice care?

Yes we do. Please visit OSF Hospice for more information.

Palliative Care

What role does the patient's family or primary doctor play in palliative care?

The palliative care team works in partnership with the primary doctor in the treatment of the patient.

What is palliative care?

Palliative care is a specialized medical care for people with serious illnesses. It involves using health care teams to provide patients with relief from symptoms, pain, and the emotional stress of serious illness at any stage.

OSF HealthCare offers both inpatient and outpatient palliative care.

Where can I receive palliative care services?

Palliative care is offered in most OSF hospitals and in some places outpatient or in the home.

How do I get started with palliative care?

Outpatient Palliative Care

If you are interested in outpatient palliative care for you or your loved one, please call us toll-free (800) 446-3009, option 6, and option 6 again to get started.

Inpatient Palliative Care

If you are a patient in one of our OSF hospitals and would like palliative care, please ask the attending physician for a referral or discuss your needs with your nurse.

What professionals make up the palliative care team?

This can vary among providers, but usually the team is made up of a physician and/or mid-level provider, nurse, social worker and a chaplain.


What are some examples of serious illness?

Cancer, congestive heart failure, emphysema, kidney failure, Alzheimer disease, Parkinson’s disease, and multiple sclerosis are all examples of serious illnesses.