Domains and Locations for Palliative Care Physician Education

Educational Domains

• Pain assessment and treatment

• Non-pain symptom assessment and treatment

• Ethical principles and legal aspects of end-of-life care

• Communication skills; Personal reflection

• Psychosocial Aspects of Death and Dying:

Death as a life-cycle event Psychological aspects of care for patient/family Cultural and spiritual aspects of end-of-life care Suffering/Hope

Patient/family counseling skills

• Working as part of an interdisciplinary team

Care Locations

• Hospice/ Palliative Care Consultation Service or Inpatient Unit

• Outpatient Clinic

• Residential Hospice

• Long-term care facility source: Author.

and symptom control, communication skills, ethics, and legal aspects of care. The most recent curriculum for medical oncologists and oncology trainees, developed in 2001 by the American Society of Clinical Oncology, includes twenty-nine modules covering symptom control, communication skills, and related aspects of palliative care. Curriculum standards for palliative care fellowships have been proposed by the American Board of Hospice and Palliative Medicine and the AAHPM. An extensive listing of peer-reviewed educational tools, curriculum guides, reference articles, and palliative care links are available at the End-of-Life Education Resource Center.

In parallel to physician education, the nursing profession has been working to develop curriculum guidelines and materials for nursing education. Palliative care education content has been reviewed in nursing textbooks and two educational products have been developed for nursing education, ELNEC (end-of-life nursing education consortium) and TNEEL (the toolkit for nursing excellence at end-of-life transitions) (Ferrell et al.). In addition, a national consortium of nursing groups has come together to plan for institutional changes in nursing education and practice surrounding palliative care (Palliative Care).

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