Palliative care focuses on supporting patients and their families through serious illness. It is a fairly new area in medicine recognized by board certification, often being confused with hospice. Much education is needed regarding the type of supportive care offered by a palliative care team. There is a growing body of research that demonstrates better quality of life and longevity when palliative care is involved. There are only a few physicians in Santa Fe who are board certified in palliative care. Dr. Douglas Egli, FACP Medical Director for CSV Palliative Care, is one of them and will take part in the panel discussion following the evening’s presentation.
Steven Pantilat, MD, is a Professor of Clinical Medicine in the Department of Medicine at the University of California, San Francisco, the Alan M. Kates and John M. Burnard Endowed Chair in Palliative Care, and the founding Director of the UCSF Palliative Care Program. Dr. Pantilat is also the Director of the UCSF Palliative Care Leadership Center that trains teams from hospitals across the country on how to establish Palliative Care Services. Dr. Pantilat is Board Certified in Hospice and Palliative Medicine and Internal Medicine. In 2007 he was a Fulbright Senior Scholar studying palliative care at the Royal Prince Alfred Hospital, University of Sydney, and Curtin University in Sydney, Australia. Dr. Pantilat is also a hospitalist, and is a nationally recognized expert in hospital medicine as well as in Palliative Medicine. He is the Past-President, a past member of the Board of Directors, and the former Chair of the Ethics committee for the Society of Hospital Medicine. Dr. Pantilat is a member of the Program in Medical Ethics at UCSF and serves on the UCSF Medical Center Ethics Committee. In 2011 Dr. Pantilat received a Leadership Award from the James Irvine Foundation in recognition of his work to improve the lives of Californians.
Dr. Pantilat, along with colleagues at UCSF, was a co-editor of a series in JAMA (the Journal of the American Medical Association) focused on improving end-of-life care titled “Perspectives on Care at the Close of Life.” That series was subsequently updated and published as a book in 2011 titled, “Care at the Close of Life” for which Dr. Pantilat served as a co-editor. Dr. Pantilat along with his colleague Dr. Tony Steimle, Chief of Cardiology for Kaiser Santa Clara, wrote the chapter on Palliative Care for Patients with Heart Disease. Dr. Pantilat’s extensive publications and research focus on improving care for seriously ill patients in hospitals, communication, and palliative care for people with heart disease. He is currently the Principal investigator of a randomized clinical trial of palliative care added to optimal medical management for improving quality of life, symptoms, and resource utilization for people with heart failure. Dr. Pantilat is also founding director of the Palliative Care Quality Network focused on improving the quality of care provided by palliative care services.