Decision Assist – education for GPs in EoL care

GPs in Australia are managing increasing numbers of older Australians with complex progressive conditions. I am managing a project that is producing education and resources to support GPs provide the best care of this patient cohort in the last year of life. Palliative medicine specialists and trainees have an opportunity to participate in this project by letting informing their networks of the activities of the project and participating in educating GPs in their service’s catchment area to help promote linkages.  This blog post is to give you all an outline of this work and information on how to get more involved.

The project is being conducted by ANZSPM as a part of Decision Assist. Decision Assist is a program funded by the Australian Government Department of Health to support GPs and aged care workers to care for older Australians living in the community. This program is multifaceted and in addition to resources for GPs includes a free 24/7 phone line (1300 668 908) for GPs (and aged care workers) connecting to a palliative medicine specialist for advice, workshops for GPs about advance care planning, workshops for aged care workers about palliative care and advance care planning and a phone app – palliAGED – (downloaded in the usual way).

I have managed several projects conducted by Palliative Care Australia and ANZSPM and funded by the Australian Government in the area of health workforce education and spent 2 years as the Executive Director of ANZSPM. I am really enjoying this project and have many GPs, palliative medicine trainees and palliative medicine specialists supporting the project e.g. as part of the Advisory Group, writing educational materials or reviewing materials as they are produced. The project could not be successful without participation from these clinicians.

ANZSPM is providing a range of educational activities accredited by RACGP and ACRRM including a workshop, an online education module as an alternative to a face to face workshop available through gplearning (RACGP members) and rrmeo (ACRRM members), a clinical audit, and an active learning module (RACGP members)/Theory practice activity (ACRRM members).

These educational options are based on a framework of palliative care, a tool that uses three prognostic trajectories, to support GPs to proactively manage their patients’ care as it transitions from curative to palliative and to facilitate a quality end-of-life according to patient preferences. It is founded on work undertaken both the UK (The Gold Standards Framework) and in Australia (The Palliative Approach (PA) Toolkit – Module 1: Integrating a palliative approach) (374kb pdf) developed by The University of Queensland; Brisbane 2012).

Would you like to be involved?
ANZSPM is providing resources to organisations such as specialist palliative care services and GP training organisations to enable them to deliver the workshop to GPs and GP registrars.
If you are a palliative medicine specialist, advanced trainee (within 6 months) of graduating, a GP member of ANZSPM or a GP medical educator you are invited to attend a train the train workshop being held by ANZSPM in October 2015.

To register for the train the trainer workshop click here.

For more information:

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