CareSearch Blog: Palliative Perspectives

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.
 

Learn more on end-of-life care – free and peer reviewed

A guest blog post by Kim Devery, Senior Lecturer and Head of Discipline, Palliative Care, Flinders University

  • 25 October 2016
  • Author: CareSearch
  • Number of views: 3679
  • 0 Comments
Learn more on end-of-life care – free and peer reviewed
Let’s be frank, end-of-life care can be tricky. Yes, dying is normal, but it hasn’t been a major focus in the acute hospital systems.  Health care professionals working in acute hospitals can find themselves challenged by patients with end-of-life care needs. Doctors, nurses and allied health professionals can be in a situation where they do not know how to best respond to a patient with end-of-life needs. Appropriate end-of-life interventions can be missed.

With 52% of Australians dying in acute hospitals, end-of-life care is essential knowledge for all health care professionals. 

 

National Standards Assessment Program (NSAP)

A guest blog post by Lauren Ognenovski, NSAP Project Officer and Policy and Community Engagement Officer, Palliative Care Australia

  • 5 October 2016
  • Author: CareSearch
  • Number of views: 4184
  • 0 Comments
National Standards Assessment Program (NSAP)
The National Standards Assessment Program (NSAP) is funded by the Australian Government Department of Health and administered by Palliative Care Australia (PCA). NSAP has been running since 2008 and is a quality improvement program available for all specialist palliative care services in Australia.

NSAP aims to improve outcomes in palliative care and end-of-life care at a systematic level by providing a structured program for services. The structured 2-year NSAP cycle enables specialist palliative care services to enhance the quality of their governance and service delivery by:
  • Reviewing how they meet the National Palliative Care Standards (the standards)
  • Prioritising key improvement areas so they can better meet the standards
  • Developing and implementing a quality improvement action plan

“Something vital was missing throughout that process for Maria and her family.”

A guest blog post by Dr Joel Rhee BSc(Med) MBBS(Hons) GradCert(ULT) PhD, FRACGP

  • 27 September 2016
  • Author: CareSearch
  • Number of views: 4546
  • 1 Comments
“Something vital was missing throughout that process for Maria and her family.”
I remember a patient some years ago. I’ll call her Maria. She was a lovely Italian woman, in her late 80’s, with a very supportive family.
 
Maria had developed very complex medical problems. She had heart issues, kidney problems and quite severe diabetes. In the last year of her life she had recurring kidney failure and breathing difficulties. She was going in and out of hospital every three or four weeks.
 
The medical team did their very best for her – they were very focused on her medical issues and her symptoms, and she received excellent medical care. A lot of focus was given to how best to look after her kidneys, her heart, her pain and her difficulty with breathing. As her problems multiplied and her needs became increasingly complex, the care she received continued to be excellent.

 

Free palliative care online training helping people live well with chronic illness

A guest blog post from Alison Verhoeven, Chief Executive, Australian Healthcare and Hospitals Association

  • 7 September 2016
  • Author: CareSearch
  • Number of views: 4975
  • 2 Comments
Free palliative care online training helping people live well with chronic illness
Palliative Care has become widely recognised as one of the most vital disciplines in Australian health, with our ageing population and increasingly effective medical treatments bringing about longer and longer final care stages of life.

Palliative care can be an awkward subject to broach – it is difficult to talk about death. However, given our ageing population and our rising rates of chronic and complex disease, including increasing instances of multiple morbidities, these discussions have never been more important and following the discussion, we must meet the growing need for carers with palliative care skills.

 

Listen, Acknowledge, Respond: Addressing the mental health needs of those living with dying

A guest blog post from the Listen Acknowledge Respond project team: Julianne Whyte, CEO, Amaranth Foundation, Janelle Wheat, Associate Dean Academic, Charles Sturt University, Janelle Thomas, Research Officer and Kirsty Smith, Project Manager, Listen, Acknowledge, Respond, Charles Sturt University

  • 30 August 2016
  • Author: CareSearch
  • Number of views: 3754
  • 1 Comments
Listen, Acknowledge, Respond: Addressing the mental health needs of those living with dying

Mental health and palliative care patients: the “treatment gap”
Sadness, social withdrawal, depression, loss of hope; if a non-palliative person experiences any of these feelings, the health care system has well established processes and services to treat them. Why then do we accept this as ‘normal’ and ‘to be expected’ for those facing the end of life? Why does the system hesitate to ‘label’ these vulnerable people with a mental illness tag?

Mental illness in the terminally ill is too often underdiagnosed and undertreated. It’s frequently ignored – “well of course you’re having trouble coping, you’re dying,” – or pushed aside in favour of addressing clinical symptoms. While existential and psychological care is acknowledged as being crucial to providing quality end of life care, people continually report that theirs, their families and care givers needs in this domain are not addressed.

 

12345

About our Blog

The CareSearch blog Palliative Perspectives informs and provides a platform for sharing views, tips and ideas related to palliative care from community members and health professionals. 
 

Keep me up to date