This learning pathway provides comprehensive online education in social work practices to improve quality of life for patients living with a serious illness. Social workers can use Social Work Serious Illness Designation to demonstrate expertise in working with this patient population.

An In-Depth Look At Palliative Care And Its Services

Defining palliative care, which patients need it, how it is delivered, and how palliative care differs from hospice.

Delivering Serious News

Communicating serious clinical news to patients and families.

Conducting a Family Meeting

Communication techniques for an effective family meeting.

Advance Care Planning Conversations

How to initiate and conduct conversations about advance care planning.

Discussing Prognosis

How to discuss patient prognosis in a manner that is sensitive, clear, and supportive.

Clarifying Goals of Care

Strategies for eliciting patient goals and preferences to inform treatment decisions.

Care Coordination

Guidance for all clinicians on improving communication and ensuring smooth transitions of care for patients living with serious illness.

Supporting the Family Caregiver: The Burden of Serious Illness

Assessing and supporting caregivers of people with serious illness.

Course 1: Comprehensive Pain Assessment

Conducting a comprehensive pain assessment to guide safe and effective treatment.


Prevalence, screening recommendations, and evidence-based strategies to treat depression in patients with serious illness.


Prevalence, screening recommendations, and evidence-based strategies to treat anxiety in patients with serious illness.

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