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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.
Some patients do not receive adequate pain and symptom relief at the end of life, causing distress to patients, families and healthcare professionals. It is unclear whether undertreatment of symptoms occurs, in part, because of nurses' concerns about legal and/or disciplinary repercussions if the patient dies after medication is administered. Dr Katrin Gerber, Professor Lindy Willmott, Professor Ben White, and Distinguished Professor Patsy Yates from Queensland University of Technology discuss the findings from their research and interviews with nurses from different clinical backgrounds and settings about their concerns when providing pain and symptom relief to patients near the end of life.
Art therapy is used in palliative care to compliment a holistic approach to care and to augment traditional clinical and medical approaches. In this blog, Estelle Chapple, an Art Therapist for Central Adelaide Palliative Care, and Michelle Cripps, Director for Centre for Creative Health, discuss the impact of art therapy in palliative care settings.
Discussions about CPR (Cardiopulmonary Resuscitation) are difficult because they confront the person with death. However, when cardiac arrest occurs there is no time to ponder the pros and cons of CPR or to discuss this with the person’s substitute medical treatment decision-maker. Dr Barbara Hayes, Clinical Lead in Advance Care Planning and Palliative Care Consultant at Northern Health, discusses the importance of increasing awareness of CPR decision-making prior to acute illness and why discussions and decisions are a necessary part of medical treatment planning.
Preparing and planning for quality symptom management and palliative care should be a priority in the management of COVID-19 in residential aged care facilities. Kim Offner, Project Officer at ELDAC, discusses the lessons learnt and the practical recommendations from the Palliative Care and COVID-19 webinars which the project recently hosted.
Advance care planning (ACP) is one of the main topics that callers to the ELDAC Helpline call for assistance with. Caroline Litster, Research Officer from ELDAC, discusses the type of ACP inquiries received, and how the Helpline team assist callers with navigating the more complex concerns around ACP in aged care, such as those relating to residents who lack decision-making capacity.