OBJECTIVE: To describe some current models of outpatient neuropalliative care (NPC) available to patients with amyotrophic lateral sclerosis at different institutions within the United States. METHODS: Six NPC physicians were asked to contribute written descriptions about the PC available in their ALS clinics. Descriptions were then compiled and assessed for similarities and differences. RESULTS: All clinics are multidisciplinary, with regular appointments every 3 months and similar appointment times for new visits (60-120 minutes) and follow-up visits (20-45 minutes). Four clinics have an NPC specialist embedded within the ALS clinic, 1 institution has a separate clinic for NPC, and 1 institution has both. The NPC physician at 5 institutions is a neurologist with formal palliative care training and at 1 institution is an internist with formal palliative care training. NPC is part of routine care for all patients at 2 institutions, and the primary reasons for consultation are goals of care (GOC) and severe symptom management. CONCLUSION: NPC is provided to patients with ALS heterogeneously throughout the United States with some variation in services and delivery, but all clinics are addressing similar core needs. Given the poor prognosis and high PC needs, those with ALS are the ideal patients to receive NPC. Future studies are necessary given the paucity of data available to determine best practices and to better define meaningful outcomes.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Clinical Neurology