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From Palliative Care Australia Palliative Matters Stories about living, dying and Palliative Care

Health professionals

  1. To focus on the needs of others brings great pleasure and relief

    28 June 2017

    Having spent 11 years working as a volunteer for Calvary Health Care Bethlehem, Robin Downs is very clear about who benefits most from her unpaid work. The 76-year-old, who wears bright colours and a cheery demeanour when visiting patients, tried to move away from Melbourne a few years ago. She missed her volunteer work so much that she came back.

  2. Life after a big loss: school or prison? Meet grief therapist Liese Groot-Alberts

    27 June 2017

    Liese Groot-Alberts is a keynote speaker at this year’s Australian Palliative Care Conference in Adelaide. She became a therapist after the sudden death of her young daughter. While working with internationally renowned psychiatrist, Elisabeth Kubler-Ross, Liese learned that after a big loss, you can decide to make life a school or a prison.

  3. Living with dementia: carers’ experiences in their own words

    22 June 2017

    “After about two years of inconclusive tests, finally, I was told by a specialist in Sydney that [my husband] had dementia. He said the sooner I accepted the fact the better, that acceptance was a journey, but he didn’t really tell me what dementia is; just that I had to accept it.”

  4. Letter captures zest for life that dementia has stolen

    13 June 2017

    Richenda Rudman wrote a letter to residential aged care staff so they understood who her mother Denise was before dementia. It was a cathartic process which she hopes will remind busy staff of her mother’s humanity.

  5. Artistic merit only part of the picture: judge looking for heart and soul

    13 June 2017

    As one of the three judges determining the overall winner of Palliative Care Australia’s art competition this year, Anzara Clark is clear about what she’ll be looking for. It’s something more than technical brilliance, inspired composition or colour mastery. “The first thing I want is for something to jump out of the work and grab […]

  6. Winning haiku shines with wisdom, reflecting value in volunteering

    9 June 2017

    The death of his grandfather and a decline in his grandmother’s health inspired 22-year-old student, Joel Raymond, to learn more about death and dying and its impact on other families. Through volunteer work, he has contributed to many patients and families receiving palliative care, gaining insights that shine in his winning poem, crafted for a competition during National Palliative Care Week.

  7. Mobile hairdressers, cleaners and counsellors: website offers practical gifts for the bereaved

    8 June 2017

    Thousands of dollars worth of flowers were delivered to Kim Oakhill’s friends when their three-year-old daughter died. An allergy in the family meant that the flowers were relegated to the garage, where they made a mess and died. Watching on, Kim found herself wishing the flower money had provided something more practical to support the family, which inspired a great idea.

  8. Book review – A Matter of Life and Death: 60 voices share their wisdom

    30 May 2017

    ‘A Matter of Life and Death: 60 voices share their wisdom’ is a compilation of reflections and narratives by people from various countries and backgrounds sharing their wisdom and perspectives on death. Yet as the title suggests, the reflections are as much about life, as death.

  9. Art competition to focus on connection with community

    27 May 2017

    “Just do it.” That is Ashley Fiona’s advice to any artist who is tempted to enter Palliative Care Australia’s online art competition, launched today. Ashley, who won the People’s Choice award last year, says she is “stoked and very honoured” to have been selected as a judge, along with last year’s overall winner, Anzara Clark, and artist Margaret Ambridge.

  10. Consensus on principles for palliative and end-of-life care in residential aged care

    24 May 2017

    New guiding principles on the delivery of palliative and end-of-life care services in residential aged care have been agreed by six influential peak bodies. The principles reflect the need to recognise when an aged-care resident is approaching the end of life, in order to ensure their physical, emotional and spiritual needs are assessed and met.


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