Advance provides training and support for general practice nurses in Australia.
General practices provide ongoing care for a large number of patients with chronic, debilitating and eventually fatal diseases.
As a general practice nurse, you play a key role in patient management. Your ongoing relationship with patients and carers, and the level of trust you develop, means you are ideally placed to help patients identify their most important symptoms, concerns and priorities.
The Advance training package will help you and General Practitioners (GPs) to work together to initiate ACP and, where appropriate, palliative care for older and/or chronically ill patients within the practice.
“As the population ages, hearing the patient’s voice on what is important to them becomes more and more important. Practice nurses can bring a lot to the process, and allow GPs to make the most efficient use of their time possible.
Advance is comprehensive, and gives practical tools and advice in how best to facilitate identifying the end of life and planning appropriately for it. It is a professional and relevant training package. I would say – do it!!”
Geoff Mitchell MBBS PhD FRACGP FAChPM
Professor Geoff Mitchell is Professor of General Practice and Palliative Care, and a member of the Advance Advisory Group
“I think primary care nurses have the potential to play a big role in improving the care of patients with supportive and palliative care needs. This project will help train many primary care nurses in being able to have difficult conversations with patients.
I would encourage primary care nurses to embrace this opportunity and give it a crack! You’ll be pleasantly surprised on how rewarding it is to be involved in caring for patients who are nearing the end of life. The most fulfilling part of my clinical practice is in seeing palliative care patients."
Joel Rhee BSc(Med) MBBS(Hons) GradCertULT PhD FRACGP
Dr Joel Rhee is an academic general practitioner with special interest in end of life care and advance care planning. He is also a member of the Advance Advisory Group
We asked Dr Josephine Clayton, Advance Program Director, to tell us a bit more about what lies behind Advance, and why it’s had so much support.
Yes - I am a palliative medicine physician at HammondCare in Sydney and an Associate Professor of Palliative Care at The University of Sydney. I have a strong interest in supporting general practices to provide advance care planning and palliative care to their patients.
We have developed a toolkit and training package specifically to support nurses in Australian general practices to work with GPs to initiate advance care planning and palliative care in their practice.
The development of this toolkit and training package is funded by the Australian Government, Department of Health, and endorsed by the Australian Primary Health Care Nurses Association (APNA).
In addition to the Toolkit and the online education modules, as part of Advance, general practice nurses can access workshops, mentorship, a train-the-trainer program and complete advance care planning and supportive and palliative care assessments as part of their clinical practice.
Scholarships are available for rural general practice nurses to attend workshops to be held in major Australian cities and reimbursement is available for completion of advance care planning and supportive and palliative care assessments.
We want to provide ongoing improvement to the program in order to optimize care for your patients.
The only way we can evaluate the quality and the impact of the Advance Training and the toolkit assessment tools is through your valuable feedback. Your participation in a 10-15 minute survey before and after the online training program will help us to improve and refine the program for the future. After completing the online training modules, you will have the opportunity to take part in some other evaluation activities and be reimbursed for your time.
General practices are in an ideal position to undertake advance care planning because of the trusted relationships that develop with their patients. The general practice environment enables planning discussions to start early when a patient is still relatively well.
General practices provide ongoing care for a large number of patients with chronic, debilitating and eventually fatal diseases, both malignant and non-malignant conditions. Thus general practices have an essential role in providing palliative care to patients and their families.
The Advance Toolkit consists of six screening tools and a guide which indicates how to implement the screening tools in a systematic way in general practice, to initiate conversations about advance care planning and supportive and palliative care.
The Toolkit was informed by a literature review of the best available evidence about tools to support palliative care and advance care planning in general practice, as well as through input from our expert advisory group and feedback from general practice nurses and Carers Australia.
These online education modules explain how to use the tools in clinical practice.
The Advance training is specifically designed for nurses working in Australian General Practices. The focus is on initiating palliative care and advance care planning in General Practice. The heart of the program is a set of screening and assessment tools to enable you to do this. The training will teach you how to use these tools in your clinical practice. The training aims to increase your skills and confidence in initiating conversations with older and/or chronically ill patients about advance care planning. It will also help you to identify and assess the needs of patients, and their carers, who might be at risk of deteriorating and dying. This training complements training being offered by other national programs such as PEPA and Decision Assist.
You can get started today on the Advance Website – just click www.caresearch.com.au/advance> joining the project
Last updated 29 June 2017