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.

7 July 2020

New online course in bereavement

Australian Centre for Grief and Bereavement has released a new online course: Effective Brief Contact. The course provides a simple framework and strategies that can be used to ensure effective bereavement support when only having brief contact with bereaved or grieving individuals. 

29 June 2020

Release of new AIHW palliative care data

Australian Institute of Health and Welfare (AIHW) has released its palliative care data update: Palliative Care Services in Australia. This is an online report on the activity and characteristics of palliative care services across Australia.

23 June 2020

North Western Melbourne PHN supporting End-of-Life quality improvement

North Western Melbourne PHN has released a new model and workbook for general practice End-of-Life Care (4.80MB pdf) quality improvement (QI). Produced as part of the as part of the Greater Choice for At Home Palliative Care measure, the booklet provides instruction, external links to resources, and fillable forms for practice QI in general practice.

10 June 2020

News from Advance Care Planning Australia

In June 2020 Advance Care Planning Australia (ACPA) announced the departure of founding team member and Medical Director, Professor Karen Detering. They have also released two new reports, a report on Obligations of Australian health practitioners in relation to advance care planning (1.38MB pdf), and a second report that examines Australian advance care planning laws: Can we improve consistency? (1.59MB pdf) Both reports are available from the ACPA website.

5 June 2020

Support for palliative care in COVID-19 World Health Assembly resolution

The 73rd World Health Assembly has included palliative care in its approved resolution 73.1 on COVID-19 (286kb pdf). The original draft (83kb pdf) proposal was forwarded by an international group including Australia.

5 June 2020

South Australia announces recipients of the Palliative Care 2020 Grants Program

The South Australian government department of health and wellbeing has announced 15 recipients of funding under the Palliative Care 2020 Grants Program. The government received over 70 applications for the $1.4 million of available funds aimed at improving access to and diversity of palliative care services for South Australians.

5 June 2020

Palliative care it’s more than you think campaign from Victoria

To coincide with National Palliative Care Week (Sunday 24th May – Saturday 30th May) Palliative Care Victoria launched a video-based community awareness campaign called ‘Palliative care, it’s more than you think’. The videos are available on YouTube.

26 May 2020

New economic report calls for increased investment in palliative care

A new KPMG report commissioned by Palliative Care Australia and the Snow Foundation was released on May 26th, 2020. The report: The economics of increased investment in palliative care in Australia, presents an economic case for integrating specialist palliative care into aged care facilities, hospitals and home based care. Key recommendations include calls for additional investment, an agreement between the Commonwealth and the states and territories, and a new full-time Palliative Care Commissioner.

PCA release statement. 

26 May 2020

New investment to improve palliative care in aged care

On May 25th, 2020 the Australian Government announced that it will provide $57.2 million in funding to improve palliative care in aged care facilities across Australia. Matching of funding by State and Territory governments is expected. Read the full announcement for more.

12 May 2020

Palliative Care and End of Life Care Advice Line

Now accepting calls

The Victorian Government has introduced a new advice service (396kb pdf) available to all Victorians where you can speak with a palliative care nurse or doctor about any aspect of a life-limiting illness.

The advice service will will operate from 7am to 10pm, 7 days a week through the Parkville Integrated Palliative Care Service. To contact the advice service call 1800 360 000.

12 May 2020

CarerHelp COVID-19 resources for carers

The COVID-19 pandemic has changed the way we care for a person at the end of life, as well as how we support those who are grieving. With the current restrictions still in place, family carers can face more challenges in caring for a person with palliative care needs.

To support family carers, CarerHelp has developed new factsheets on how to care for a person at home and hospital, as well as arranging funerals and coping with grief. Pointers on using telehealth to consult with a health professional, and selecting trustworthy online information are also presented.

12 May 2020

National Palliative Care Week 2020

This year's National Palliative Care Week will be held on 24 May – 30 May 2020, with the theme 'Palliative Care: It’s more than you think!'. Led by Palliative Care Australia (PCA), the week long event aims to spark important conversations in the community about the benefits of quality palliative care and celebrate the dedication of all those working and volunteering in palliative care across Australia.

A virtual morning tea with His Excellency General, the Honourable David Hurley AC DSC (Retd), Governor-General of Australia and Her Excellency Mrs Linda Hurley, Joint Patrons of PCA, will be held on 25 May, focusing on the topic of comfort, compassion, and connection in end-of-life care. 

12 May 2020

Dying to Know Day, Home Delivered

Encouraging end of life conversations has never been more important. Dying To Know Day (August 8) is an annual day of action dedicated to activating conversations and community actions around death, dying, and bereavement.

This year, the GroundSwell Project will be bringing Dying to Know Day events to the community. A series of online events from the GroundSwell Project and communities around Australia are also scheduled.

7 May 2020

Advance Care Planning Education Capability Framework

Advance Care Planning Australia has a launched a standardised, evidence-based Advance Care Planning Education Capability Framework to support the teaching of health and aged care professionals.

It is a flexible and adaptable resource that can be easily incorporated into existing curricula to supplement the teaching of subjects such as legal and ethical practice in healthcare, palliative care approach, emergency care, care planning, care of the older person, cancer care and more.

27 April 2020

ANZSPM guidance - Palliative care in the COVID-19 context

In response to COVID-19 and to support the work of the Australian COVID-19 Palliative Care Working Group (ACPCWG), the Australian and New Zealand Society of Palliative Medicine (ANZSPM) established a COVID-19 Special Interest Group in March 2020. The group has produced guidance documents on palliative care in the COVID-19 context for the support of healthcare professionals. These guidance documents are now available on the ANZSPM website. The documents are intended to provide high level guidance only. It is recommended that healthcare professionals consult their local palliative care teams for advice on individual cases. The documents are living guidelines and are subject to change. They will be reviewed regularly as the situation evolves so users should check the ANZSPM website for updates.

Download:

Further information on the Palliative Care and COVID-19 can be found on the CareSearch COVID-19 Hub.

CareSearch is a member of the Australian COVID-19 Palliative Care Working Group (ACPCWG) and is a project under the Flinders Research Centre for Palliative Care, Death and Dying.

9 April 2020

WA Palliative Care Summit reports released

First released in late February 2020, these reports are based on two WA Palliative Care Summits held in August 2019 where West Australians shared their views and experiences to strengthen future palliative care service delivery.The WA Country Health Service (WACHS) and Perth Summits involved the discussion of strategies and recommendations from the Joint Select Committee's My Life My Choice report, WA End-of-Life and Palliative Care Strategy 2018-2028 and the Sustainable Health Review.

9 April 2020

First Australian COVID-19 Palliative Care Working Group newsletter released

The Australian COVID-19 Palliative Care Working Group has released its first newsletter as part of ongoing efforts to keep the palliative care sector informed and connected during this unprecedented and fast-changing pandemic. To view the newsletter and sign up for new releases visit the Palliative Care Australia website.

29 March 2020

Queensland Health inquiry report released

The Queensland Health, Communities, Disability Service and Domestic Violence Prevention Committee has released its first reports from its Inquiry into Aged Care, End-of-Life and Palliative Care and Voluntary Assisted Dying.

16 March 2020

Evaluation of the National Palliative Care Projects Final Report March 2020

This evaluation report describes the assessment and evaluation of the National Palliative Care Projects which are funded under the Public Health and Chronic Disease Grant Program. The Report outlines key findings and recommendations.

13 March 2020

RACGP aged care clinical guide Part B released

The Royal Australian College of General Practitioners has released Part B of their aged care clinical guide. Covering General approaches to aged care the Part B of the guide includes sections on a range of topics including Principles of multimorbidity, Palliative care approach, and Advance care planning.

12