Perinatal Palliative Care
The Woman’s Perinatal Palliative Care Program offers support for families facing difficult decisions when expecting a newborn with life-limiting conditions. Perinatal palliative care can begin at the moment of diagnosis and may continue through delivery and beyond.
Palliative care is an approach to care that includes symptom relief and pain management for the infant and supportive care for the parents. Individual care is based on parents’ wishes, spiritual and cultural beliefs. Palliative care may be the main focus of care or combined with cure-oriented care.
Who is the palliative care team?
Our maternal-fetal medicine specialists, neonatologists and social workers, alongside nursing staff from our Labor & Delivery Unit, Antepartum Unit and the NICU, work closely to develop and fulfill specific plans. Other professionals include pharmacists, nutritionists, case managers and chaplains.
Initial care is provided in the delivery room then transferred to the parents’ location of choice based on the care required. Curative care options likely require NICU admission; however, palliative care may be administered within the mother’s room or the NICU. When mom goes home, care may be provided in the home using hospice services, home health, or transferred to an inpatient hospice facility.
How is palliative care accessed?
Your maternal-fetal medicine physician or obstetrician can access the program through Woman’s Social Services Department by calling 225-924-8456.