A Family Wonders If They Should Hope a Loved One with COVID-19 Lives or Help Him Die

December 24, 2020

(Los Angeles Times) – Palliative care is the medical specialty that helps improve the quality of life for patients with serious illnesses — everything from the curable, such as trauma or certain cancers, to those that bring people to the end of their days. It aims to support the whole patient and the whole family with nurses, social workers, chaplains and doctors. It is difficult to find a circumstance that has hit Kilani’s team as hard as the pandemic. Before the coronavirus swept through Los Angeles County, infecting more than 636,000 and killing nearly 9,000 people, Holy Cross’ palliative care team averaged about 20 cases at any given time. In early December that caseload hit 60. In one recent four-day period, 12 of the team’s patients died.