• Hugo Antonio Fornells


Domiciliary assistance in the context of Palliative Care demands a coordinated action between the regional health system, hospitalizing institutions and home care team. Basic requisites must be complied with when considering the patient's staying at home, playing a major role in this setting, the family and the social environment. Not only the patient and his/her family are benefited, but also the health system, since high-cost and lengthy hospitalizations -in health institutions best prepared to cure than to take care of patients- are reduced. It has been proved that well-organized and efficient palliative care provides an adequate control of symptoms in terminally ill patients and comfort to their families. Some factors implying an unsatisfactory home health care are described: inappropriate home-hospital transition; insufficient pain and other symptoms relief; poor communication and inadequate family support. Home palliative care turns into practical the frequently theoretical ethical principles of beneficence, non-maleficence, autonomy, justice and equity. The task is by no means simple . Changes in health care policies are proposed  and a new attitude and perception on the part of health care professionals is encouraged in terms of recognizing and accepting terminally ill patients' real needs and the incurability of certain diseases.

Author Biography

Hugo Antonio Fornells

Médico especialista en Clínica Médica y Oncología Clínica. Miembro fundador de la Asociación Argentina de Medicina y Cuidados Paliativos. Ex Presidente de la Asociación Argentina de Medicina y Cuidados Paliativos 1996/98. Director del Módulo de Medicina Paliativa de la I Cátedra de Clínica Médica de la Universidad Nacional de Rosario. Coordinador del área de Cuidados Paliativos del SID (Servicio de Internación Domiciliaria). Coordinador del área Cuidados Paliativos y tratamiento del dolor del sanatorio Británico de Rosario.

Correspondencia : Dr. Hugo Antonio Fornells. Avenida de la Libertad 370, 6º. (2000) Rosario -Argentina.

Keywords Home health-care, Palliative Care, Teamwork, Terminally ill.