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.
 

Caring doesn’t stop just because a person enters residential aged care

A guest blog post by Kay Richards, National Policy Manager and Rebecca Storen, Policy Officer, Leading Age Services Australia

  • 20 October 2016
  • Author: CareSearch
  • Number of views: 4838
  • 1 Comments
Caring doesn’t stop just because a person enters residential aged care
I often hear people say that once a person enters a residential aged care facility that the caring role provided by the person’s family and friends is no longer required, and yet this couldn’t be further from the truth. Aged care staff encourage family and friends to stay actively involved in a person’s life. There are many obvious reasons why this is so necessary.

Moving homes is generally a stressful and emotional time and, for residential aged care, this can be further exacerbated by the fact that it is often in response to a crisis. Someone’s mother has been admitted to hospital after a nasty fall or the care requirements of someone’s husband has increased because their diabetes isn’t being well managed. Therefore, not only are people having to make important decisions about where they, or their loved one, is going to live, but this is generally during a time when emotions are high and various members of the family may have different opinions.

 

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: 4517
  • 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.

 

PCACE Project: Developing and maintaining guidance for palliative care in aged care

A guest blog post from Dr Jennifer Tieman, CareSearch Director, Associate Professor, Discipline Palliative and Supportive Services

  • 9 August 2016
  • Author: CareSearch
  • Number of views: 3772
  • 2 Comments
PCACE Project: Developing and maintaining guidance for palliative care in aged care

The release of the Guidelines for a Palliative Approach in Residential Aged Care (APRAC) and the Guidelines for a Palliative Approach for Aged Care in the Community Setting (COMPAC) were a significant advance in recognising and responding to changing population demography in Australia.  They aimed to support the provision of palliative care for older people living in the community or in residential aged care by identifying and evaluating the evidence for care to promote quality of life for older Australians who have a life-limiting illness or who are becoming progressively frailer during old age. The two sets of guidelines were important landmarks nationally and internationally. 
 

‘What is needed to improve care planning for people living with dementia?’

A guest blog post from Tim Luckett PhD, Senior Research Fellow, University of Technology Sydney and Ingrid Duff, Research Assistant, Centre for Cardiovascular and Chronic Care

  • 19 July 2016
  • Author: CareSearch
  • Number of views: 7391
  • 2 Comments
‘What is needed to improve care planning for people living with dementia?’
During National Palliative Care Week, the University of Technology Sydney (UTS) hosted a forum on dementia care planning facilitated by the Director of The Centre for Cardiovascular and Chronic Care, Faculty of Health, Professor Jane Phillips. Imelda Gilmore, an Alzheimer’s Australia NSW Dementia Advocate and wife of a person with dementia, opened the forum by highlighting the importance of “getting the word out to have conversations about end of life early on”. A recurring theme at the forum was the need for care decisions to be person-centred and focused on what the person with dementia would have wanted were they able to speak for themselves, rather than the wishes of surrogate decision-makers. Lynn Chenoweth (Professor of Nursing at the Centre for Healthy Brain Ageing, The University of New South Wales) defined person-centredness as respecting the person with dementia’s “values, beliefs, history, likes and dislikes … all of the things that make them unique”.

palliAGEDnurse app: Putting information in nurses’ hands

A Guest Blog Post from Dr Jennifer Tieman, CareSearch Director, Associate Professor, Discipline Palliative and Supportive Services

  • 12 May 2016
  • Author: CareSearch
  • Number of views: 7296
  • 0 Comments
palliAGEDnurse app: Putting information in nurses’ hands

There is no doubt that nurses are fundamental to health care. There are over 350,000 nurses currently practising in Australia. They are the largest single health profession in Australia. But more importantly, they are most often the face of care to the person needing care. And this is particularly important to remember when thinking about the care needs of an older person who may be the last stage of their life.

Many older people spend some or all of the last year of their life at home. Some will move to residential aged care or will already be in an aged care facility. Others will live with families or friends. Some may spend time in a hospital. Nearly all will be involved with a GP and with their Practice Nurses. So not only are nurses critical in enabling good care for older Australians coming to the end of their life, they will be providing this care in many different settings.
 

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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. 
 

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