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The views and opinions expressed in our blog series are those of the authors and are not necessarily supported by CareSearch, Flinders University and/or the Australian Government Department of Health.
No matter their diverse characteristics, life experiences, cultural background, gender, sexuality, sexual orientation or financial situation, every Australian has the right to have to their individual needs and expectations met without discrimination. For many, there remains a difficulty in accepting that older adults or those who are at end of life want intimacy and have sexuality needs. Nigel McGothigan, Director of Aged Care and Health Care Education from Australian Capital College discusses the tools put in place to support the aged care workforce to understand and be agile in addressing expectations and the complex and diverse care needs of the older person.
Given the pressures on the aged care system and the reform agenda currently in play, there is a continuing need to ensure that current evidence and resources are available to guide care provision for older Australians as they approach the end of their life. Professor Jennifer Tieman from CareSearch highlights that the palliAGED website provides the latest evidence and resources for palliative care in aged care and discusses how it does guidance differently.
Speech pathologists will often work with patients undergoing palliative care and treatment, despite the perception that it may not be their role. Wendy Pearse, Principal Project Officer for End of Life Care at Sunshine Coast Hospital and Health Service discusses challenging those perceptions and the importance of evidence-based practice in supporting speech pathologists in providing care for those patients.