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April 27, 2020

Proactive Integration of Geriatrics and Palliative Care Principles Into Practice for Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease

Author Affiliations
  • 1Division of Pulmonary, Allergy, and Critical Care Medicine, Department of Medicine, University of Alabama at Birmingham
  • 2Center for Palliative and Supportive Care, Division of Gerontology, Geriatrics, and Palliative Care, Department of Medicine, University of Alabama at Birmingham
  • 3Division of Pulmonary, Critical Care, and Sleep Medicine, University of Washington, Seattle
  • 4Cambia Palliative Care Center of Excellence, University of Washington, Seattle
  • 5Brookdale Department of Geriatrics and Palliative Medicine, Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai, New York, New York
  • 6Center to Advance Palliative Care, New York, New York
JAMA Intern Med. 2020;180(6):815-816. doi:10.1001/jamainternmed.2020.1088

Half of adults with chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) in the US will be 75 years or older by 2030.1 Patients with COPD often have years of debilitating symptoms that accelerate their loss of independence and well-being. COPD is progressive and incurable; many patients are frail and socially isolated and struggle with long lists of medications. Their care is often chaotic and fragmented, with frequent emergency department visits and hospitalizations.2 Given the limited numbers of geriatricians and palliative care specialists, clinicians who routinely care for patients with COPD should proactively integrate geriatrics and palliative care principles into their daily practice.

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