Would you send your patient to palliative care?


The decision to transfer a chronic patient to a palliative care unit is not easy for most of the doctors. What are the feelings associated to this medical act?

Medical decisions seems to be cold and rational, but every physician paid a bitter price when he or she decides to send a patient to a palliative care unit. Oncologist are used to deal with this situation, usually after follow a patient for months or years. The emotional factor plays an important role and it is easier for another colleague without emotional attachment to the patient to execute this change. Psychologist have shown that in general an important decision is affected for the emotional compound and recently some books have been published about this subject (Would you kill the fat man?).In general , some distance could help to take a more “rational” decision but this is not always easy for a doctor.