What's New in the Community

Read palliative care news and events around Australia. Please note that the links below were current at the time of posting, however links may become obsolete as websites update their content.

23 February 2021

New release from the Royal Commission into Aged Care Quality and Safety

On 16 February 2021, The Office of the Royal Commission into Aged Care Quality and Safety released a new paper: Research Paper 20 – The quality of care experience and community expectations prepared by Flinders University and The Caring Futures Institute

This and all other papers are now available for download from the Royal Commission website.

12 February 2021

New release from the Royal Commission into Aged Care Quality and Safety

On 09 February 2021, The Office of the Royal Commission into Aged Care Quality and Safety released a new paper: Research Paper 19 – Does the quality of residential aged care vary with residents' financial means?

This and all other papers are now available for download from the Royal Commission website.

9 February 2021

Consultation begins for home-based palliative care resources for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander families

Health professionals, health workers and other interested parties are invited to take part in national consultation to assist in the development of tailored resources for the caring@home for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Families project.

The Australian Government-funded project aims to support the provision of palliative care at home for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people, when this is preferred. This may help connect family, culture, community, country and the spiritual wellbeing of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people. Read the Factsheet for more information (280kb pdf).

You can take part by attending an in-person event, via an online survey or Microsoft Teams meeting or having a one-on-one conversation with the project manager. To participate or register visit caring@home

4 February 2021

New release from the Royal Commission into Aged Care Quality and Safety

In February 2021, The Office of the Royal Commission into Aged Care Quality and Safety released a new paper: Research Paper 18 – Hospitalisations in Australian Aged Care: 2014/15–2018/19

This and all other papers are now available for download from the Royal Commission website.

1 February 2021

World Health Organization releases new guidance on pain management in children

In December 2020, WHO released new guidelines for the management of chronic pain in children. Based on the most current scientific evidence, the recommendations include three areas of inventions: physical therapy, psychological therapy, and pharmacological management, which may include the use of morphine for end-of-life-care or when chronic pain is associated with life-limiting conditions. 

12 January 2021

PCA publishes Palliative Care and COVID-19: Grief, Bereavement and Mental Health

As part of its planning and leadership for the palliative care sector during the COVID-19 pandemic, PCA held two strategic forums in 2020 with experts in palliative care, grief, bereavement and mental health to identify the emerging issues, available resources and gaps in current service provision. In December 2020 the outcomes paper Palliative Care and COVID-19: Grief, Bereavement and Mental Health was published summarising the key outcomes of these two strategic meetings together with key research to identify the immediate and longer term issues which will have ongoing impact in the Australian community.

12 January 2021

New releases from the Royal Commission into Aged Care Quality and Safety

In December 2020, The Royal Commission into Aged Care Quality and Safety released a new paper: Research Paper 17 – Experimental Estimates of the Prevalence of Elder Abuse in Australian Aged Care Facilities.

Also released was the ICT Strategy and Architecture Report in which the Architecture Practice describes the findings of their independent assessment of the current state of aged care information, communications and assistive technology systems for the aged care sector. It found that there are major deficiencies which do not lead to positive outcomes for older Australians accessing aged care, and propose a number of actions for the Royal Commissioners to consider.

These and all other papers are now available for download from the Royal Commission website.

5 January 2021

Palliative Care in General Practice ECHO Network - caring for the dying

Sydney North Health Network is launching the Palliative Care in General Practice ECHO Network in February 2021.

Many GPs provide some degree of end-of-life care to patients and their families, and with an ageing population this is set to increase.

Project ECHO is a guided practice education and mentoring model that exponentially increases access to best practice through knowledge-sharing networks.

The Palliative Care in General Practice ECHO Network is a live, online learning series that includes co-management of patient cases in an interactive environment and provides a platform for collaborative learning. It will provide access to an interdisciplinary team of palliative consultants and specialists who will guide case discussion and present latest updates.

Project ECHO can support you in your work through case-based learning. There is an opportunity for GPs to bring de-identified cases for advice and support and it will also feature short presentations on Caring for the Dying.

For further information or to express an interest in participating in the Palliative Care Project ECHO, email Brooke Jay: bjay@snhn.org.au

16 November 2020

Palliative Care Australia seeks new leader

On Friday 13 November, 2020 the Board of Palliative Care Australia (PCA) released a media statement to announce that they would commence recruitment of a Chief Executive Officer following the resignation of Chief Executive Officer Rohan Greenland to take up an appointment as Chief Executive Officer of MS Australia. In the interim Ms Tamara Mckee has been appointed as acting CEO of PCA during the recruitment process.

28 October 2020

PCC4U Care worker learning modules released

On October 26th, the PCC4U team launched the PCC4U Care Worker Toolkit. This online suite of palliative care eLearning modules supports the delivery of CHCPAL001 - Deliver care services using a palliative approach (Release 2).
The Toolkit provides sixteen modules organised into five topics to develop knowledge and skills in palliative care through case studies, video vignettes, activities and evidence based content. Visit the new website for more information and to get started.

23 October 2020

Implementation Plan for the National Palliative Care Strategy 2018

On October 20, the Department of Health have released their Implementation Plan for the National Palliative Care Strategy 2018. Key to the plan are four action areas:

  1. Access to palliative care is increased, particularly for underserved populations.
  2. The collaboration and coordination of palliative care is improved.
  3. Advance care plans are being prepared by people affected by life limiting illnesses and used to facilitate shared decision-making across care settings.
  4. Nationally consistent data collection mechanisms are implemented and national public reporting is underway.

You can download the plan from the Department website.

23 October 2020

New publications from the Royal Commission into Aged Care Quality and Safety

On October 22nd at the final hearing of the Royal Commission into Aged Care Quality and Safety, findings were handed down by the Counsel Assisting team for the consideration of the Commissioners, and for any response by interested parties.

The documents containing 124 recommendations including in relation to palliative care are now available from the website:

The Commission has also released two new research papers prepared by National Ageing Research Institute (NARI):

20 October 2020

Talking End of Life … with People with Intellectual Disability (TEL) refresh

Talking End of Life … with People with Intellectual Disability (TEL)  is designed for disability workers but is also helpful for others, and shows you how to teach people with intellectual disability about the end of life. This month the website has added new resources and refreshed the video pages. Visit the TEL website to learn more.

12 October 2020

New version of palliMEDs app

caring@home has new resources available for health professionals providing palliative care in the community - new versions of palliMEDS and Medicine Guidelines.

12 October 2020

Palliative Care Self Assessment (PaCSA) Online Portal

Palliative Care Self Assessment (PaCSA) provides services with an online portal to self-assess against the National Palliative Care Standards (5th ed.), mapped against the National Safety and Quality Health Service Standards (2nd ed.), resulting in a quality improvement action plan.

12 October 2020

Consultation for the National Palliative Care and End-of-Life Care Information Priorities

The Australian Institute of Health and Welfare is seeking input and feedback from the public on the draft National Palliative Care and End-of-Life Care Information Priorities. The draft document aims to help guide efforts in palliative care and end-of-life care information development over the next 10 years. The deadline to submit feedback is on 8 November 2020.

12 October 2020

CarerHelp panel discussion on coping with grief and loss

CarerHelp is hosting a panel discussion on Caring at the end of life: Navigating grief and loss on 13 October 2020. Hosted by Di Darmody, speakers in the panel include: Mr Chris Hall (CEO, Australian Centre for Grief and Bereavement), Associate Professor Lauren Breen (School of Psychology, Curtin University), Ms Voula Kallianis (Social Worker, Palliative Care, St Vincent’s Hospital Melbourne), Ms Briony Lyle (bereaved carer of her late husband), and Ms Rennie Neasey-O’Connell (Funeral Director, Parkside Funerals).

The discussion will be livestreamed on Carers Australia Facebook Page at 5:00 pm AEDT, Follow the Carers Australia Facebook page to be alerted when the livestream begins.

12 October 2020

Carers Week 2020

11-17 October is National Carers Week and this year's theme is Tell Us Why You Care which aims to highlight the realities of caring and help build a carer-friendly Australia.

One in eight Australians provide unpaid care and support to family members or friends with a disability, mental illness, chronic condition, terminal illness, an alcohol or other drug issue or who are frail aged. Unpaid carers make an enormous contribution to our community and economy and National Carers Week gives everyone a chance to show their appreciation.

6 October 2020

Revised PBS listing for opioids to support palliative care

Commencing 1 October 2020, the Pharmaceutical Benefits Scheme (PBS) listings for opioid medicines will look different. Following feedback received regarding recent changes to opioid analgesic medications listed on the PBS, the Pharmaceutical Benefits Advisory Committee (PBAC) has recommended additional changes to ensure unimpeded access to opioid medication to palliative care patients. You can read more about the changes including extension of secondary review rights to palliative care nurse practitioners (611kb pdf).

30 September 2020

The Commonwealth Department of Health has provided funding to support nurses attending PCNA 2020

This years PCNA (Palliative Care Nurses Australia) conference is going to be an interactive virtual event running over 4 days from the 22nd - 25th of November 2020.

The Commonwealth Department of Health has sponsored grants available for PCNA delegates:

  • Working in aged care settings
  • Working with the elderly in end-of-life care
  • Working in regional and remote locations.

Apply now for the chance to receive:

  • Full delegate registration to attend PCNA 2020 virtual conference
  • PCNA coordinated mentorship program for health professionals in areas of need
  • Complimentary attendance at a PCNA workshop
  • One-year membership of PCNA
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