I have a few palliative care links to share this week. If you’re not satisfied, we also share links on our Facebook page and Twitter account (you don’t need your own Twitter account to see what we’re posting), and you can check out our Elsewhere in the Palliverse archives.
At the End of Life Studies blog, Dr Naomi Richards examines the question, “Is the voluntary refusal of food and fluid an alternative to assisted dying“?
Talking About Dying Won’t Kill You, says Palliative Care Australia, writes comedian Jean Kittson (Sydney Morning Herald)
And a palliative care nurse told me that day after day she visited a person dying at home and day after day she walked into a house full of scented candles and rainforest music, until one day she said “Is anyone else sick of these scented candles?” and the family said “Yes”. “And is anyone else sick of this rainforest music?” And the family said “Yes”. So the nurse said “Well, let’s open some windows, and what music does your mum like? OK, let’s put on some Stones.”
The next couple of articles are from the US, where doctors may soon be reimbursed for advance care planning conversations with patients (Pallimed)
“The way the medical system handles death is broken, and requires bigger fixes than freedom of consumer choice. Many of us will face quandaries far too nuanced to be solved by aid-in-dying laws. My parents certainly did.” (Aid in Dying Laws Are Just a Start, New York Times)
In Canada, it’s great to see the ACCEPT study, and advance care planning, receiving mainstream press coverage. (End-of-life care conversations benefit everyone, including doctors, Globe and Mail)
I’m sure most of us can can relate to how frustrating/insulting/demoralising it is to be introduced to a patient as the person/team that’s called “when there’s nothing more we can do”. There’s always something we can do. (The Error in “There’s Nothing More We Can Do”, New York Times)
Public health academics Simon Chapman and Becky Freeman recently answered the question, Who has Australia’s most-followed Twitter accounts in health and medicine?, in the Public Health Research and Practice journal.
In a long read, Australian journalist Gillian Terzis examines Death Trends: Hashtag Activism and the Rise of Online Grief. (Kill Your Darlings)
I feel the list is a bit first world, doctor-heavy this week (which was bound to happen when you have a first world doctor curating the list). Apologies also for the lack of quirky or animal-centric stories. I’ll try harder next week. If you see any, please share them below (along with your comments about this week’s reads).