Is Greater Access to Palliative Care on the Horizon?

Three peices of legislation that would increase patient awareness about the benefits of palliative care have been endorsed by National Association of Chain Drug Stores (NACDS). The legislation would help enabling patients to make more informed decisions about palliative care, especially if the patient has a serious illness. 


According to the NACDS press release: 

“As healthcare professionals on the frontlines of providing needed services to millions of Americans, we deeply understand the requirement for a comprehensive approach to pain management and the increasing need for palliative care,” NACDS wrote to lawmakers. “Access to palliative care services is essential and the need for these services has been growing in recent years, especially in the expanding Medicare and Medicaid populations. However, access to palliative care information and providers has not kept pace with the need for such services.”

Among the legislation NACDS supports is H.R. 1666 which would increase funding for the National Institutes of Health to conduct research on symptom management and palliative care in order to improve quality of care. This bill would also establish a national quality of life education and awareness grant program to assist seriously ill patients, as well as their families and health professionals.