In aging societies, the last phase of people’s lives changes profoundly, challenging traditional care provision in geriatric medicine and palliative care. Both specialties have to collaborate closely and geriatric palliative care (GPC) should be conceptualized as an interdisciplinary field of care and research based on the synergies of the two and an ethics of care. Major challenges characterizing the emerging field of GPC concern the development of methodologically creative and ethically sound research to promote evidence-based care and teaching; the promotion of responsible care and treatment decision making in the face of multiple complicating factors related to decisional capacity, communication and behavioural problems, extended disease trajectories and complex social contexts; the implementation of coordinated, continuous care despite the increasing fragmentation, sectorization and specialization in health care. Exemplary strategies to address these challenges are presented: GPC research could be enhanced by specific funding programs, specific patient registries and anticipatory consent procedures; treatment decision making can be significantly improved using advance care planning programs that include adequate decision aids, including those that address proxies of patient who have lost decisional capacity; care coordination and continuity require multiple approaches, such as care transition programs, electronic solutions, and professionals who act as key integrators.
Cite this article:
V. Indra. Geriatric Palliative Care. Int. J. Nur. Edu. and Research. 2019; 7(4):629-632. doi: 10.5958/2454-2660.2019.00142.X