People celebrate at party with sparklers

Palliative Medicine is an extra layer of support to help those who have serious illness live well.  Palliative Medicine focuses on improving quality of life and providing expert symptom management.  This initiative focuses on addressing patients and their families as a whole – this requires an interdisciplinary team to provide the best care possible.  This team includes physicians, advance practice providers, nurses, social workers, and spiritual leaders, but even more importantly, the family.

Through a partnership with the Sentara Center for Health Care Ethics, students receive Advance Care Planning (ACP) training to become Advance care planning champions to help our community.  Students also work on completing their own Advance Care Plan, allowing them to understand the cultural variability in patient experiences with end-of-life discussions. 

Students learn to understand and overcome the misconceptions and stigma associated with hospice to help the community obtain the best possible quality of life, especially when life expectancy is limited. 

In this initiative, students will:

Students involved with the Palliative Medicine CEL have the following opportunities:

  • Complete Advance Care Planning (ACP) facilitator training through the Sentara Center for Healthcare Ethics to become advance care planning champions in Hampton Roads
  • Obtain a palliative care designation by completion of Center to Advance Palliative Care (CAPC) learning modules
  • Participate in home visits with interdisciplinary hospice team members (to include nursing, social work, and spiritual team members) and interdisciplinary team meetings
  • Reflect on cultural variability in patient experience of the end-of-life process
  • Understand additional resources that are available to patients enrolled in hospice
  • Appreciate the role of caregivers’ in caring for patients at end of life
  • Reflect on his/her own perspective on dying and death
  • Reflect on a personal or professional experience of grief or loss


For additional details on Palliative Medicine, you can download the handout: HERE

You may also contact Community-Engaged Learning for any additional questions.

Students, report your CEL hours: HERE