This blogpost is dedicated to a patient that I never thanked for the part she had to play in my palliative care education.
The sharing of patient stories can have a huge role to play in the education of healthcare practitioners and laypeople. Palliative Care health literacy remains relatively low despite palliative care services having been present in Australia and New Zealand for well over three decades. Relatively few healthcare practitioners let alone members of the general public understand the role that palliative care services can have in the improvement of quality of life. Are we sharing the right stories, in the right places, to the right people?
“Never the twain shall meet,” has been the oft repeated refrain when it comes to technology and palliative care.
Palliative care has traditionally focused on providing ‘low-tech and high-touch’ services, are these concepts outdated or have we entered an era of algorithm-driven automaton provided health-care(?) In the next 20 years, 47 to 81% of jobs in the future will be threatened by developing technologies, are palliative care jobs at risk as well? Can the tin-man actually do the job as well if he doesn’t have a heart?
Has science-fiction become science-fact? The team at Melbourne’s own Anatomics are leading the way with custom-made 3D-printed patient implants. What possible impacts could 3D-printing have on palliative care provision? Continue reading →
In recent years scientific research into the effects of cannabinoids has been on the increase. Some would say that not-so-scientific research on the effects of cannabis has been underway for many hundreds of years, in many different countries and cultures.
Until recently I didn’t know that our own bodies produce endogenous cannabinoids, the various effects of which are still being studied.
Two years ago, colleagues had informed me that at the Montreal Conference 2015 it was a ‘smokingly hot’ topic. The most widely studied cannabis-derived cannabinoids are Cannabidiol(CBD) and Tetrahydrocannabinol (THC.) You may have heard of some of the medications that have ‘come to market’ since then: Continue reading →
Here is a copy of my slides from the Keynote presentation that I made on 16/09/16 at the Hospice New Zealand 2016 Conference.
I was intentionally being provocative and I was purposefully trying to challenge the audience’s mindset with the material that I presented, as I believe that New Zealand Hospice/Palliative Care needs to be “shaken up,” if it is to remain relevant. Now it’s your turn, you have been warned…
I am working on a version which will have clickable links, and also on a recorded live performance of the presentation. In the meantime the slides with comments have been loaded onto the Palliverse Instagram account.
What would happen after the joyous reunion of Poppa and Junior? This was a question asked at our multidisciplinary meeting two and a half months ago. From the accumulated experience of our staff members we thought it could go either of two ways:
Poppa might get a “boost” from being reunited with Junior and other family members, and might improve.
Poppa had used what was left of his energy holding on to see Junior and would continue to deteriorate.
The first time I met the young ladies I had been cross-covering at the hospital, and was taken to see each of them as they both had severe pain and discomfort. They came from completely different backgrounds, had lived completely different lives but somehow ended up on the same journey.
About a week or so later they had both been admitted into our inpatient unit for pain control. Adjustments were made and they became more comfortable, but a few days later pain had returned again, as well as other problems. We had to aim at constantly moving targets, and so it would be over the next three months of their individual roller-coaster rides.
The similarities were startling; the same diagnosis, the same poor response to treatment, and in the end the same prognosis. What was completely different was their individual experiences of the same outcome. Continue reading →
The local branch of shipping company Maersk reached out to Palliverse after reading the NZ Herald article from Sunday. Their can do attitude was much appreciated by us all. Thank you very much.
Thanks also to everyone who has made suggestions, offered advice and wished us well for this mission. It is heartening that people are taking time out of their busy lives to try to help their fellow man. Be proud of yourselves.
Poppa has become extremely fatigued over the past three days which is a big concern to the hospice team and the family. There’s a possibility that time may be shortening, as Poppa’s condition continues to deteriorate.
There has been some good news – Junior has been improving everyday and has been in touch with his specialist again. His risk of further eye injury is now estimated to be low, and because of the uncertain situation that Poppa is in the decision has been made for Junior and other family members to board the earliest flight to Auckland tomorrow.
Poppa has been informed of the travel plans and is looking forward to seeing Junior tomorrow. Poppa is trying his best to hold on.
Fingers and everything else remain crossed. Prayers are being said by many people on both sides of the Tasman.
Good luck Poppa and Junior – I sincerely hope that you can have your reunion.