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Improving Palliative Care in the ICU

Full access to IPAL-ICU, as well as CAPC tools and technical assistance, is reserved for members. Log in now if you're from a member institution. Or to learn more about membership, please call Rosie Aponte, Membership Associate, at 212-824-9574.


Little more than a decade ago intensive care and palliative care were thought to be mutually exclusive; they were seen as sequential approaches to critical illness. Today we recognize that from the time of admission to the ICU, all critically ill patients and their families should benefit from palliative care. Palliative care should therefore be provided concurrently with intensive care therapies.

IPAL-ICU, a project dedicated to improving palliative care in the ICU, is designed to provide a central venue for sharing expertise, evidence and tools, along with links to colleagues, organizations and informational materials. The goal is to assist ICU, hospital leaders and clinicians across disciplines in the effort to successfully integrate palliative care and intensive care.

Implementing this integrated paradigm in day-to-day practice is an important, ongoing challenge. With support from the National Institutes of Health (NIH) and the Center to Advance Palliative Care (CAPC), we have created IPAL-ICU to help.

Download the most recent publication from IPAL-ICU,  Integration of Palliative Care in the Context of Rapid Response

Download the following important screening tool from the IPAL-ICU Portfolio:

Implementing ICU Screening Criteria for Unmet Palliative Care Needs: A Guide for ICU and Palliative Care Staff

This document includes screening criteria and a guide to help identify patients with a high likelihood of unmet palliative care needs. The guide is a series of worksheets/process steps organized into four sections, including Needs Assessment, Screening Criteria Selection, Implementation Planning and Evaluation.

Take advantage of guidance from our experts and explore IPAL-ICU resources in CAPC Central. If you have innovative resources you would like to share, please contact us at ipalicu@mssm.edu.

CAPC members have access to all  IPAL-ICU,  IPAL-EM and IPAL-OP tools and expert resources.  To access  IPAL-ICU,  members can log in here. To become a member organization, please click here.