About soniafullerton

Palliative physician, internet addict, mum of three.

Bring dying refugee to Australia for palliative care, urge health professionals

Thousands of doctors have signed a petition calling on the immigration minister, Peter Dutton, to bring a refugee dying of advanced lung cancer to Australia for palliative care.

The 63-year-old is being held on Nauru and is a member of the persecuted Hazara minority in Afghanistan. He has been formally recognised as a refugee. But the Australian Border Force told the man that he could not come to Australia for palliative care, despite claims that the palliative care available on Nauru is inadequate.

The Australian Border Force  (ABF) has told the 63-year-old patient, who is suffering from advanced lung cancer, that he is deemed to have “refused treatment” because he declined to be moved to Taiwan to die. Cynically, the ABF has also offered the patient $25,000 to return home to Afghanistan. Continue reading

APLI forum Sydney 5 September promoting palliative care in Asia-Pacific

Interesting in helping to develop palliative care in the Asia-Pacific region?

APLI is the Australasian Palliative Link International.

It is a small charitable organisation made up of Australian and New Zealand palliative care clinicians. APLI aims :

  • to develop and foster links between palliative care providers and organisations in Australia and New Zealand and the Asia-Pacific region
  • to raise awareness of the needs of new palliative care services and the need for further development of the discipline in the region.
  • to provide a forum for the exchange of information and ideas between providers of palliative care in the region.

Continue reading

Life in a hospice – reflections on caring for the dying

We have had an email from the Palliverse – Ann Richardson has kindly made her book “Life in a hospice” available as an e book. Life in a Hospice: reflections on caring for the dying is based on very honest interviews with a variety of hospice staff in England, talking anonymously about the joys and challenges of their work and its impact on their lives.

See below for her email. Let us know if you have read it! Thanks Ann for letting us know

Sonia Continue reading

Pallimed article on heart failure palliative care trial

Thanks to Dr Drew Rosielle for this thoughtful analysis of an important trial, comparing usual care to usual care plus palliative care in ambulatory heart failure patients.

http://www.pallimed.org/2017/07/palliative-care-chf-pal-hf-trial.html

Headline – palliative care improved quality of life. So this article is adding to the literature supporting this idea, which mostly occurs in the malignant domain.

Check out Pallimed if you have time, it’s got great stuff!

Enjoy!

Sonia

 

ANZSPM position on medicinal cannabis

ANZSPM criticises failure to consult on medicinal cannabis

The Australian and New Zealand Society of Palliative Medicine (ANZSPM) is calling for improved consultation with end-of-life care experts after yesterday’s Senate decision on medicinal cannabis.

ANZSPM President, Dr Carol Douglas FAChPM, expressed concern that the decision will have ramifications for both patient and practitioner protections:

Continue reading

Dying to talk?

Palliative Care Australia brings you this youtube video which you can share with patients, families and friends…

Jean Kittson says it’s important to complete the Dying to Talk Discussion Starter and encourages you to speak to your loved ones about your end-of-life care wishes.

If you make any advance care plans, bonus points for documenting something in writing it and sharing it with your substitute decision maker, your MyHealthRecord, your  GP and local hospital!

 

Integrated Palliative Care – what does this mean in 2017?

The team at @Palliverse are huge fans of Prof Jenny Philip, an inspirational speaker and all round wise and skilled person!

Come along to Monday Lunch (it’s a good lunch) next week and see Jenny share her thoughts on

Monday Lunch Live with Prof Jennifer Philip

8th May 2017

The Role of Integrated Palliative Medicine in Best Cancer Care

Victorian Comprehensive Cancer Centre

Lecture Theatre B, Level 7

305 Grattan St, Melbourne, VIC 3000

Book Now : come along, catch up live via webinar, or later when you have time. 

Continue reading

Dying2learn? Join the conversation about death and dying

Our colleagues at CareSearch  are developing and running a ‘Massive Open Online Course’ (MOOC) on death and dying (Dying2Learn) for the second year in a row.

The CareSearch MOOC will provide an opportunity for any Australian to openly and supportively discuss, learn, and contribute to discussions on social issues around death and dying. The MOOC has been created for the general public in Australia, but everyone is invited to join us.

Registrations open on 27th of March for a start on 3rd April. It will run for five weeks.

It will include learning modules covering:

  1. How does today’s society engage with death and dying? How do we use language to describe it? What about the role of t.v. and film?
  2. What does death ‘look’ like? How is death and dying portrayed in the media?
  3. If death is the problem, is medicine the answer? A look at what we die of, the role of medicine, and prolonging life versus prolonging death.
  4. Digital dying: Death during the internet age.

Want to know more? Please visit www.caresearch.com.au/Dying2Learn

6th International Conference on Advance Care Planning and End of Life Care (ACPEL) in Canada

image.conference.acpel.png

Details at a glance:
Event: 6th International Conference on Advance Care Planning and End of Life Care (ACPEL)
Theme: Conversations Matter
Date: September 6-9, 2017
Location: The Banff Center, Banff, Alberta Canada

Twitter analysis shows increasing awareness of palliative care in the USA

Palliverse is a fan of twitter and social media in general increasing awareness and uptake of palliative care. This analysis of search terms in twitter shows that awareness of palliative care looks to be increasing in the US, compared to in the UK where it is well established.

Internet search query analysis can be used to demonstrate the rapidly increasing public awareness of palliative care in the USA
McLean, S., Lennon, P., Glare, P.
BMJ Support Palliat Care. 2017; 0:bmjspcare-2016-001171v1-bmjspcare-2016-001171.

Abstract

Background

A lack of public awareness of palliative care (PC) has been identified as one of the main barriers to appropriate PC access. Internet search query analysis is a novel methodology, which has been effectively used in surveillance of infectious diseases, and can be used to monitor public awareness of health-related topics.

 

Objectives

We aimed to demonstrate the utility of internet search query analysis to evaluate changes in public awareness of PC in the USA between 2005 and 2015.

Methods Google Trends provides a referenced score for the popularity of a search term, for defined regions over defined time periods. The popularity of the search term ‘palliative care’ was measured monthly between 1/1/2005 and 31/12/2015 in the USA and in the UK.

 

Results

Results were analysed using independent t-tests and joinpoint analysis. The mean monthly popularity of the search term increased between 2008–2009 (p<0.001), 2011–2012 (p<0.001), 2013–2014 (p=0.004) and 2014–2015 (p=0.002) in the USA. Joinpoint analysis was used to evaluate the monthly percentage change (MPC) in the popularity of the search term. In the USA, the MPC increase was 0.6%/month (p<0.05); in the UK the MPC of 0.05% was non-significant.

 

Discussion

Although internet search query surveillance is a novel methodology, it is freely accessible and has significant potential to monitor health-seeking behaviour among the public. PC is rapidly growing in the USA, and the rapidly increasing public awareness of PC as demonstrated in this study, in comparison with the UK, where PC is relatively well established is encouraging in increasingly ensuring appropriate PC access for all.