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Starts at $9.98 per contact hour
Min. Hours $$/Hr
4 hours $8.98
8 hours $7.98
12 hours $6.98
20 hours $5.98
30 hours $4.98

End-of-Life Issues: Hospice and Palliative Care

2.5 Contact Hours
Target Audience: Nurses, healthcare professionals, and interested individuals
Purpose/Goal: The outcome of this course is for the learner to describe an overview of end-of-life issues in hospice and palliative care, including the specific characteristics of hospice and palliative care and the similarities and differences in hospice and palliative care for both adults and children.
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Using a multidisciplinary team approach, the primary goals of hospice and palliative care are to provide symptom control, psychosocial and spiritual care, and optimal quality of life. The role of hospice and palliative care is rapidly expanding due to a better understanding of end-of-life issues by health care professionals.

Upon completion of the course, you will be able to do the following:

  • Define hospice care and the services it provides.
  • Explain the management of pain and nonpain symptoms.
  • Define palliative care.
  • Describe palliative care services for the seriously ill.
  • List important aspects of palliative care from the patient's perspective.
  • Discuss the similarities and differences of hospice and palliative care.
  • Describe issues related to providing quality end-of-life care.
  • Examine goals of care for the dying patient.
  • Describe holistic palliative care for the dying child.

Considered to be the model for quality, compassionate care for people facing a life-limiting illness or injury, hospice and palliative care involve a team-oriented approach to expert medical care, pain management, and emotional and spiritual support expressly tailored to the person’s needs and wishes (The National Hospice and Palliative Care Organization [NHPCO], 2015).

The hospice and palliative care movement has helped people come to terms with their terminal illness, impending death, and the importance of spiritual issues and needs.

Hospice and palliative care provide a blend of physical and spiritual care for the dying person and his or her family. A team of nurses, physicians, social workers, psychologists, pastoral care professionals, and volunteers may be utilized to address various dimensions of care, including spiritual care (Kellehear, 2000). Two models of end-of-life care have evolved in the United States: (1) “traditional” hospice care under the Medicare Hospice Benefit and (2) palliative (or comfort) care. Hospice and palliative care have similar characteristics as well as some that are unique to each (Kuebler, Berry, & Heidrich, 2002).

Hospice care includes the provision of palliative care, but palliative care is both a method of administering comfort care and, increasingly, an administered system of care offered most often by hospitals. The principles and core values of palliative care and hospice care are the same.


The elderly population is expected to double within the next 50 years. This will create added strain on our already stressed social support and health care systems. Society will have to determine how to care for the terminally ill in a growing elder population with chronic diseases and terminal illnesses (Perron & Schonwetter, 2001).

Hospice care is widely used. Consider the following facts (NHPCO, 2015):

  • An estimated 1.6 to 1.7 million patients received services for hospice
  • More than half of hospice patients are female
  • 84.0% of hospice patients are 65 years of age or older
  • Pediatric and young adult patients account for less than 1% of hospice admissions

Complete the course post exam (CE Test) with a score of 80% or greater. Complete all fields of the course evaluation form. Certificate of Completion is provided once the course post exam is passed per criteria above.

  • American Board of Managed Care Nursing
  • ANCC - American Nurses Credentialing Center
  • AOTA - American Occupational Therapy Association
  • ASWB - Association of Social Work Boards
  • California Board of Behavioral Sciences
  • California Board of Registered Nursing
  • California Department of Health, Aid, and Technician Certification Section
  • District of Columbia Board of Nursing
  • Florida Board of Nursing
  • Florida Board of Nursing - Certified Nursing Assistants
  • Florida Board of Respiratory Care
  • Florida Council of Dietetics and Nutrition
  • Florida Council of Licensed Midwifery
  • NAADAC - The National Association of Alcohol and Drug Abuse Counselors
  • NCBTMB -National Certification Board for Therapeutic Massage & Bodywork
  • Florida Board of Massage Therapists


Practice Level:


Content Focus:

Domain of OT

Course Expires:

May 30, 2019

  • Cyndie Koopsen, RN, BSN, MBA, HNB-BC, RN-BC, HWNC-BC
  • Caroline Young, MPH
Jurisdictional Requirements:

Continuing education (CE) licensing requirements vary by jurisdiction, are not well defined, and may change. These CE requirements may vary in terms of the number of hours required to the types of courses that must be taken. ALLEGRA Learning Solutions, LLC recommends you contact your licensing board or accrediting organization for the latest continuing education requirements of your state or territory. Compliance with CE requirements is the responsibility of the individual health care provider. Health care providers must understand the CE requirements in their jurisdictions, and be sure they are up-to-date on any rule changes that affect their license. For further information, please see our Accreditation Information.

Accommodations for Disabilities:

Every effort will be made to accommodate your special needs. To request accommodations, please contact us.

Conflicts of Interest and Relevant Financial Relationships:

The authors/planning committee members have no conflicts of interests or relevant financial relationships to declare relevant to this activity.

Commercial Support:

No commercial support has been received for this activity.

Non-endorsement of products:

Accreditation refers to recognition of continuing nursing education only and does not imply ALLEGRA Learning Solutions, LLC approval or endorsement of any commercial product.

Off-label Use of Products:

None of the authors intend to discuss off-label uses of drugs, mechanical devices, biologics, or diagnostics not approved by the FDA for use in the United States.