With its focus on improving quality of life, advanced illness and/or post-acute care are distinct from care intended to cure an illness or condition, although it can be delivered concurrently with curative therapies. Advanced illness care focuses on medical care for people living with a serious illness. It aims to address the symptoms or stress related to the illness and improve the overall experience and/or quality of life for patients, caregivers, and family members. Advanced illness care may also include palliative and hospice care, which includes comprehensive care that addresses medical, emotional, spiritual, and social needs during the last stages of a person’s terminal illness.
Post-acute care includes medical or supportive care provided to individuals after leaving an acute care setting, such as a hospital, but they are not ready to return home. This includes rehabilitation and even palliative care services.
The Advanced Illness and Post-Acute Care committee considers measures that address post-acute care and advanced illness, including cancer and end-stage disease (e.g., end-stage renal disease). Subtopics may include advanced illness management, the assessment of physical, emotional, social, psychological, and spiritual aspects of care, access to and timeliness of care, patient and family experience with care, patient and family engagement, care planning, hospice care, palliative and end-of-life care, chemotherapy, rescue, and intensive care unit (ICU) care.