Healthcare systems have been grappling with defining quality care for some time. Some aspects of quality care, such as equitable and timely access, are understood and broadly applicable regardless of the type of care provided. Others fit more awkwardly with palliative care provision.
Great news for WA palliative care folk, with one of the big names in palliative care visiting Perth as part of National Palliative Care Week 2018. Dr Puchalski will be appearing at free events for the public and for those working in palliative care, thanks to the PaSCE team from Cancer Council WA. See below for more details, via PaSCE:
The Palliative and Supportive Care (PaSCE) team, from Cancer Council WA, is delighted to bring Dr Christina Puchalski to Perth, Western Australia from Washington D.C., USA during the 2018 National Palliative Care Week. We hope Dr Puchalski’s visit to Perth will enable WA health professionals to learn more about the science of spirituality and the integration of spirituality in their practice.
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If you are a Palliative Care Specialist and want to join a team that is constantly trying to make the world a better place for dying patients please check out this job vacancy available at Totara Hospice South Auckland, by clicking here.
At least an 0.6FTE position is available but this has recently become negotiable potentially up to 1.0FTE for the right candidate.
Please share this post with anyone you think might be interested.
The following media release was circulated this morning by Advance Care Planning Australia
National effort to start an important conversation
National Advance Care Planning Week, April 16-22
Health sector leaders from across Australia have joined forces to promote awareness of the inaugural National Advance Care Planning Week, with hosted events across the nation from Kalgoorlie, Western Australia to Cape Barren Island in Tasmania.
Together they are asking Australians of all ages and health to consider who they would like to speak for them if they were too sick to speak for themselves and what health care decisions they would want them to make.
National Advance Care Planning Week ambassadors represent clinical experts, researchers, authors and peak body and policy leaders, Australia-wide. They include:
• Dr Chris Moy, Chair of the Ethics and Medico-legal Committee of the Australian Medical Association
• Dr Karen Detering, Medical Director of Advance Care Planning Australia
• Dr Will Cairns, Clinical Lead for Queensland’s Strategy for Care at the End of Life
• Ms Liz Callaghan, CEO of Palliative Care Australia
• Dr Craig Sinclair, Research Fellow at the Rural Clinical School of Western Australia
Launching for the first time in Australia and funded by the Australian Government, National Advance Care Planning Week is part of an international public awareness effort, coinciding with significant advance care planning initiatives being held in the USA, Canada and New Zealand.
Minister for Health the Hon. Greg Hunt MP is pleased that this important health initiative is garnering support across Australia and focussing attention on advance care planning – a concept not well understood by the general public, but a critical part of healthy ageing.
“Around half of Australians will not be able to make their own end-of-life medical decisions, yet few people take the active steps required to enable control of their future health care. The week will challenge all Australians to start conversations with loved ones about what living well means to them,” says Minister Greg Hunt.
Dr Karen Detering, Medical Director of Advance Care Planning Australia commented, “the evidence is clear that advance care planning can help alleviate stress for people who find themselves asked to make medical decisions for loved ones in need”.
“Do it for yourself. Do if for your loved ones. And ideally do it when you’re fit and well – don’t leave it to chance on the day you present at the emergency room,” says Dr Detering.
More than 100 community groups and health care organisations across Australia have signed up to host an event as part of the initiative, starting an important conversation in their community about making their future health care preferences known.
People can get involved in National Advance Care Planning Week by hosting or attending an event to raise awareness or by finding out more information about advance care planning.
National Advance Care Planning Week is an initiative of Advance Care Planning Australia.
What is advance care planning?
Advance care planning promotes care that is consistent with your goals, values, beliefs and preferences. It prepares you and others to plan for future health care and a time when you may no longer be able to communicate those decisions yourself.
· Around half of Australians will not be able to make their own end-of-life medical decisions
· A third of Australians will die before the age of 75
· 85% of people die after a chronic illness, not a sudden event
· Research shows that advance care planning can reduce anxiety, depression and stress experienced by families and that they are more likely to be satisfied with their loved one’s care.
About Advance Care Planning Australia
Advance Care Planning Australia (ACPA) is a national program funded by the Australian Government Department of Health, enabling Australians to make the best choices for their life and health care.
We believe advance care planning is a heartfelt conversation and a personal statement that goes way beyond filling in a form. It’s a commitment to honour and respect an individual’s values and choices. We want to enable every Australian to make the best choices for their life and health care, based on their personal values and beliefs.
ACPA increases advance care planning resources across health sectors and NGOs, improves workforce capability, produces information resources for diverse consumers and communities, and builds the evidence base.
Please contact us for interview with an advance care planning expert or individuals who can share personal stories about advance care planning.
Download our event media kit, visit the media page.
phone: 03 9496 6653 | 0407 832 093
This FOCUS discussion examines what it means to respect the final wishes of the dying.
And how can any of us do that, when most of us are reluctant to even bring it up?
There’s the nitty-gritty stuff like a will, powers of attorney and advanced-health-directives.
And then there are the things around the edges; where do you want to spend your final hours, what will happen to your pets and what do you want played at your funeral?
Taking part in the discussion is nurse practitioner, Shannon Tassell and Dr Margaret Sealey, a palliative care counsellor from Murdoch University.
It was only about 80 years ago when communities all over the world were much more familiar with Death and Dying. This was before antibiotics, modern surgical techniques and lots of medical technologies had been invented. Now Death and Dying are not so obvious and it is not uncommon for 30+ year olds to have never been to a funeral before in their life.
Even now, Death and Dying are still D words that are avoided by many clinicians as they try to ‘protect’ their patients. Who are they really trying to protect? Themselves?
Other D words could be:
These were some of the D words that came to mind while listening to this podcast:
Have a listen and let me know what you think.
The Centre for Palliative Care is hosting what will be a thought-provoking session on the intersection of death and digital media. As someone who is periodically startled by Facebook mentions of people who have died, I am looking forward to this.
“The focus of this presentation will be to outline some of the key issues surrounding death in the digital age. This will include a critical overview of how people mourn, commemorate and interact with the dead through digital media.
The presenters will briefly map the historical and shifting landscape of digital death by considering a range of social, commercial and institutional responses to technological innovations. Discussion will centre around multiple digital platforms through a number of case studies drawn from Australia, North America and Europe.
Through these case studies they will offer fresh insight and analysis into emerging practices through which digital technologies are used to mourn, commemorate and interact with the dead.
You won’t want to miss this 21st century overview of death and social media.”
For more information email email@example.com
Advance Care Planning Australia has recently announced that National Advance Care Planning week 2018 will be held from 16-22 of April.
They include links for people who are interested in contributing to the national week, by hosting or attending an event. What would you do? A movie night? Barbeque? Seminar? Drinks with folks from your sports club? Book club meeting? We’re all encouraged to get creative and use the hashtag #acpweek18 to share the love on social media. Of course you’ll be welcome to share it here with us too. Feel free to leave a comment to let others know what you’re planning (no pun intended).
Get your abstracts in now for this year’s PCNA Conference in Brisbane,
Fostering Excellence in Palliative Care.
A little different from that found in Australia or New Zealand. 28097_PEC_Palliative_Care_Poster
Here are some ideas which might have resonance in our region.
I love the idea of automatic triggers to referral, which takes away the emotional content for the referrer of whether to refer or not. But our electronic medical record systems lag a long way behind that seen in the US, which is problematic.
I am not sure what I think about the suggested re-brand to “supportive care”. Less threatening for some patients and referrers, for sure. Does it mean we are joining the ranks of the death deniers, though?
Excellent reminder about the importance of meticulous communication with referrers. However I suggest that an item missing is laser focus on communication with patients. As patients sit at the centre of our care, I often write the letter to the patient in non medical language, and copy in the referrer and general practitioner. The letters may be light on medical detail for some referrers, but the patients often find them useful to remind them of what we talked about, and to show family, friends and other care givers.
I liked the data down the bottom about readmission rates, that would be a powerful lever for our managers to promote palliative care consultation services. Patients seen by palliative care had dramatically lower readmission rates compared with those not seen.
I would love to see an infographic about our palliative care services data, if you have seen one please let me know!28097_PEC_Palliative_Care_Poster