Expanding Neuropalliative Care to New Disease States: Benzi Kluger, MD, MS

The president of the International Neuropalliative Care Society detailed potential disease states that could benefit from neuropalliative care as well as the importance of the patient community in expanding this type of approach. [WATCH TIME: 4 minutes]

WATCH TIME: 4 minutes

"We have very intentionally and purposefully included people living with neurologic illness and their families on our board. In some ways, it stems from the fact that palliative care is person-centered, and its family centered care."

Palliative care, or specialized care intended to improve quality of life for patients with serious illness, had been traditionally thought of mainly in the oncology fields for many years until about a decade ago, when it started to seriously enter the neurology space. Now, neuropalliative care is being used in a handful of conditions, including neurodegenerative disorders such as Parkinson disease, Alzheimer disease, and Huntington disease, among others. Part of the growth of this approach has been because of the International Neuropalliative Care Society (INPCS), a recently established organization of experts in neurology.

Recently, INPCS hosted its second annual meeting, with president Benzi Kluger, MD, MS, delivering the Presidential Address on breaking barriers and building community relations to improve care. Kluger, who also serves as an associate professor of neurology at the University of Rochester, sat down following the meeting to discuss the current ways neuropalliative care is being used, and whether there are neurologic conditions that could see additional benefit from it. Additionally, he provided detail on the relationship between patients and clinicians in neuropalliative care, how patients have served as a great resource, and why they can continue to help in the expansion of this approach in the future.

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