Palliative Medicine

Palliative medicine is a specialized care option for patients suffering from severe illnesses. At Memorial Healthcare, patients with these sicknesses can participate in a robust palliative care program called Perspectives to experience an enhanced quality of life. People throughout Shiawassee County and its surrounding areas trust Memorial Healthcare for compassionate palliative medicine services.

What Is Palliative Medicine?

Palliative care gives patients with serious illnesses the opportunity to ensure that the care they receive aligns with their wishes. This interdisciplinary approach is intended to augment patients’ overall quality of life and is not based on the individual’s prognosis. In other words, palliative medicine delivers specific care needs that keep the patient comfortable as they strive for the best possible outcome.

Palliative care plans may include treatment for curing the disease while helping the patient manage their symptoms. From a palliative medicine standpoint, symptoms are not only those related to physical health. A provider will also offer the patient strategies for handling the emotional stress, psychosocial effects, and spiritual impact of battling a life-limiting disease.

Besides the patient, a palliative medicine doctor will extend assistance to family caregivers, as well. For instance, family members may need guidance in making care choices for their loved ones if they become incapacitated and can no longer make those decisions themselves.

What Diseases Require Palliative Medicine?

Palliative care allows a patient to better deal with the various manifestations of their disease, from shortness of breath and nausea to anxiety and appetite loss. Older adults often seek palliative medicine as it helps them cope with the health troubles that come from aging. Patients with the following sicknesses may be required to obtain palliative care:

  • Alzheimer’s disease
  • Amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS)
  • Cancer
  • Cardiovascular disease
  • Chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD)
  • Chronic liver disease
  • Congestive heart failure
  • COVID-19
  • Dementia
  • Diabetes
  • Drug-resistant tuberculosis
  • Eosinophil-associated disease (EAD)
  • HIV and AIDS
  • Huntington’s disease
  • Kidney failure
  • Liver disease
  • Multiple sclerosis
  • Neurological conditions
  • Parkinson’s disease
  • Pulmonary fibrosis
  • Rheumatoid arthritis
  • Sickle cell anemia
  • Stroke

The Perspectives Program at Memorial Healthcare

The Perspectives Program takes an interdisciplinary approach to palliative medicine. It concentrates on delivering specialized medical and nursing care and symptom relief to patients with life-limiting disorders. Although the primary goal of The Perspectives Program is to promote a higher quality of life for patients, it can also act as a supplement to curative treatment. Currently, the hospital is accepting provider referrals for this palliative care program.

Palliative Care Providers

Typically, palliative medicine teams consist of multiple doctors and nurses who have special training in this field, as well as other specialists that provide additional support for patients. Nutritionists, social workers, and clergy members are just some of the professionals that make up palliative care teams outside physicians.

At Memorial Healthcare, Dr. Lynn Larson, DO, plays an important role in palliative medicine care. Dr. Larson is currently accepting new patients with most insurances. However, parents and guardians should note she does not currently serve child patients.


Questions About Palliative Medicine?

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Memorial is such an amazing place with caring qualified professionals that go out of their way to ensure all of their patients are safe and satisfied! Such a gem in our community!
- Nick Terek

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Lynn Larson, DO

Memorial Medical Associates About


818 W. King Street, Suite 103
Owosso, MI 48867

Phone: (989) 729-4961 Fax: (989) 729-4958

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Palliative Care vs. Hospice Care

Since palliative medicine shares some similarities with hospice, some people confuse the two as the same type of care. However, there are key differences between the two care options. Hospice care is reserved for patients nearing the end of life who are at a high risk of dying from the disease within the next few months. In other words, providers no longer attempt to provide curative treatment.

Like hospice care, palliative medicine emphasizes comfort for the patient and support for their families, but it also leaves open the option for treatments that can cure the disease. If palliative care teams conclude that no curative treatments are helping, they may transition the patient to hospice care.

What Are the Advantages of Palliative Care?

People who seek palliative medicine will experience more guidance in managing their symptoms. The focus on better quality of life means patients and their families may reap the following additional benefits:

  • Fewer trips to the hospital
  • Consideration of their care wishes
  • More clarity on treatment plans
  • Holistic strategies that account for the health of the body, mind, and spirit
  • Opportunities to conduct advance care planning
  • Less aggressive treatments
  • Stress relief about receiving medical care
  • An extra level of support when questions or concerns come up

How to Approach Palliative Medicine

While the care provider knows different treatment options and can suggest the best choices for their patients, there are steps people can take to make the most of palliative care. Patients should conduct the following tasks with their families when they receive referrals for palliative medicine from their physicians:

  • Evaluate the physical, social, psychological, and spiritual effects of their illness
  • Learn more about the disease, such as the path the doctor expects it to take
  • Contemplate their cultural and spiritual beliefs, concerns, desires, and goals and how these factors may dictate their treatment decisions
  • Think about proxies and end-of-life care wishes

Attain Compassionate Palliative Care from Memorial Healthcare

Patients throughout the Greater Shiawassee County area and surrounding regions rely on Memorial Healthcare for service excellence with palliative medicine. Governed by an independent Board of Trustees, the providers and staff at the non-profit hospital collaborate with patients, residents, and leaders in the communities they serve to augment and expand care services.

Besides the main, 161- bed facility in Owosso, MI, Memorial Healthcare also has more than 25 satellite offices in Auburn, Chesaning, Corunna, Durand, Laingsburg, Okemos, Ovid-Elsie, Perry, and St. Johns. Altogether, the healthcare organization serves approximately 30,000 emergency patients and delivers a range of ancillary services to over 200,000 outpatients and 3,800 inpatients.

Contact us today to learn more about palliative medicine or receive other patient information.



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Obtain Palliative Medicine Care From Memorial Healthcare

To learn more about the palliative care services and available patient resources, contact us today.