Applications are now open for The Dame Quentin Bryce Palliative Care Nursing Research Fund – a new funding opportunity created to support research into palliative care nursing. The funds are offered by the Centre for Palliative Care (c/o St Vincent’s Hospital) and the Department of Nursing, The University of Melbourne.
Existing scholarship holders are eligible to apply (though please check the terms and conditions of your scholarship before applying).
Decision Assist is running a series of free webinars on advance care planning and palliative care.
For those of you new to webinars, you can watch the presentation live on the internet and interact with the presenters, or just watch the presentation later. Some health services and aged care facilities are watching them together as part of their continuing professional development or education programs.
Here is a link to register. The next one is presented by Ilsa Hampton, CEO, Meaningful Ageing Australia
Decision Assist Aged Care Webinar Series – Grief, trauma and loss
Calling all nurses… Next month PCNA will celebrate more than a decade of progress towards its vision of excellence in palliative care nursing.
DID YOU play a part in establishing the foundation for this progress?
DO YOU want to contribute to future progress towards this vision?
ARE YOU just curious to check out the latest advances in palliative care nursing?
Whether you’re in Canberra, Cooma, Clayfield, Carlton, or Christchurch—this conference is your opportunity to meet and mingle with experts in your field, as well as catch up with old colleagues or make new friends and professional connections.
In this post we give an overview of the conference program and keynote speakers presenting at what promises to be an outstanding conference, not to be missed!
A thoughtful article regarding our modern attitudes to dying by Dr Craig Bowron, an internist (i.e. physician in internal medicine for us Down Under, or general medicine consultant)
Opting to try all forms of medical treatment and procedures to assuage this guilt is also emotional life insurance: When their loved one does die, family members can tell themselves, “We did everything we could for Mom.”
In my experience, this is a stronger inclination than the equally valid (and perhaps more honest) admission that “we sure put Dad through the wringer those last few months.”
I agree with Dr Bowron, that sometimes we may not consider the cost to the person (not the financial cost, other costs) of being able to say, “We did everything we could.”
What do you think? Does this apply where you are?
PS Thanks to Tegan, a social worker I work with, for pointing me to this article.
In my state, Victoria Australia, the VEC (Victorian End of life Coordinating Program) is undertaking similar work, and plans to release a Victorian end of life care plan soon.
In Australia, we have not had the negative stories and experiences seen in the UK; because the LCP was implemented in a better way? The stories coming out of the Neuberger report were shocking: I cannot imagine any patient being denied a drink when requested “because she is on the LCP”. However the LCP has also been withdrawn locally in response to the negative findings delivered in the UK.
I will be participating in a pilot of the new end of life care plans which will replace the LCP locally. I am looking forward to seeing the final version.
Thoughts, dear reader, about the terminal care of the LCP?
Not the traditional festive season article perhaps, but this review article by Dr Blinderman and the late Dr Billings provides a good summary in a very reputable and widely read journal concerning end of life care in hospitals in the United States.
Is end of life care in hospital in the US different?
The article reports that 29% of deaths take place in hospitals in America, a bit lower than I would have expected. In Australia, 54% die in hospital but this includes inpatient palliative care deaths which are excluded from the US figure of 29%.
According to AIHW, 42% of the Australians who died in hospital had some involvement from palliative care (42% of 54% in hospital deaths is 23%) About a third of patients who died as an admitted patient in hospital (a third of 54% is about 15%) died in inpatient palliative care. That still leaves us behind the US, with around 36% dying in a non palliative inpatient Australian hospital bed compared to 29% in the USA.
Interestingly the NEJM article does not refer to subcutaneous medications which are the mainstay of terminal care medication administration in Australia, New Zealand and the UK. Do US practitioners use less SC medication?
Personally I don’t find that cough and nausea are so troubling at the end of life, and we would promote meticulous mouth care for dry mouth ahead of pharmacological management.
The article also advises us to avoid benzodiazepines for delirium including at the end of life, which I found surprising.
Dear reader, do you have any thoughts? What is end of life care like in hospitals in your neck of the woods?
Calling all nurses (and even non-nurses) with an interest in end-of-life care… Get your game face on and check out this innovative approach to online learning and continuing professional development. Continue reading →