GRPCC eNews No48 - March 2021
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Life and Death Matters 

The GRPCC eNews Life & Death Matters is circulated bi-monthly to provide you with current information regarding the GRPCC members, including upcoming education and training. If you have been forwarded the GRPCC eNews from a colleague or friend and would like to receive your own copy, click here to subscribe

New Resources
Guidelines and documents to assist health professionals and carers in recognising and delivering evidence-based practice in palliative care
The GRPCC Clinical Practice Group (CPG) continues to source and provide clinical practice guidelines and documents in response to GRPCC identified needs to assist health professionals and carers in recognising and delivering evidence-based practice in palliative care.

The importance of evidence based practice cannot be underestimated in the palliative care environment, whether in the community, in residential aged care, or the inpatient setting.

Click on the recently reviewed / endorsed guideline to view

For a full list of CPG Guidelines please visit the GRPCC website

GRPCCS Monthly Education - Delirium

Clinical staff involved in delivering community or inpatient palliative care are invited to participate in monthly education sessions delivered by Gippsland Regional Palliative Care Consultancy Service.    This months highlighted topic will be Delirium

Date: Tuesday 27th July 2021
Location: Zoom
Time: 2:00 - 3:00pm 
RSVP:  Email or call 5173 87

Gippsland Paediatric Palliative Care Workshop

Doctors, nurses and allied health staff are invited to participate in a Paediatric Palliative Care workshop facilitated by Melissa Heywood, Clinical Nurse Consultant for the Victorian Paediatric Palliative Care Program (VPPCP) from the Royal Children’s Hospital, Melbourne. 

Date: Tuesday 24th August 2021
Location: Monash School of Rural Health – Traralgon Campus, Latrobe Regional Hospital, Princess Highway, Traralgon
Time: 9.30am – 3.30pm (Registration from 9.00am) 
* Will pivot to online if covid restrictions continue.

Topics covered include:
  • What is Paediatric Palliative Care?
  • Symptom management
  • Ethics
  • Communication
  • Psychosocial and Bereavement support
  • Very Special Kids (VSK) update by Libby Roden
Click Here to register 

The Program of Experience in the Palliative Approach (PEPA) aims to improve the accessibility of quality palliative care in the community by increasing the skills and confidence of health professionals who are caring for people with life-limiting illnesses, and their families.

Palliative Approach in Community Aged Care Workshop (Face to face)

For community aged care workers, disability support workers and case managers working in aged care with limited or no palliative care experience and who have not attended a PEPA workshop previously.

Date: Wednesday 11th August 2021
Location: Century Inn, Promenade A, 5 Airfield Road, Traralgon
Time: 9.00am – 4.00pm (Registration from 8.30am) 

Topics covered include:

  • Principles of palliative care
  • Communication
  • Providing care
  • Advance care planning
  • End-of-life care
  • Ethical issues in palliative care
  • Caring for yourself

Click Here to register 

What are the implications of voluntary assisted dying for nursing practice? 

Professor Peter Hudson, Director of the Centre for Palliative Care at the University of Melbourne will ask the question, “What are the implications of voluntary assisted dying for nursing practice?” opening the discussion to a panel of experts from across Australia.
Voluntary assisted dying (VAD) is a major legal, ethical and policy issue with significant implications for health systems, multidisciplinary health care professionals and communities. 
This seminar seeks to outline key implications of VAD for nursing practice. It will not focus on arguments for or against VAD, but instead provide an overview and insights about the nurses’ role in VAD from a legal and clinical practice perspective.  

Date: Thursday 12th August 2021
Location: Online
Time: 6:00 - 7:00pm

Click here for more information and to register

Project Updates

Grief, Loss and Bereavement in Gippsland Survey

The GRPCC is  committed to supporting  generalist and specialist palliative care health professionals in providing grief, loss and bereavement support to clients and their families in both the community inpatient setting, residential aged care settings.
The GRPCC have developed a short  online survey for clinicians about grief, loss and bereavement practices based on the Victorian Bereavement Support Standards 2012.  This survey is anonymous, and we request only that you identify your health professional type, and the area in which you practice.

Some of you may have also met with the Gippsland Region Palliative Care Consultancy Service Social Workers to discuss grief and bereavement practices in your service. We have collaborated with the GRPCCS Social Workers on this survey  which will be an adjunct to their interviews.   

The survey and interviews will assist the GRPCC  with planning to inform content and direction of support and education regarding bereavement, loss and grief over the next 12 months.

Please follow this link to the survey

We will provide information on the outcomes of the survey via our website.
To stay up to date with education and activities of the GRPCC please access our newsletter link.

Palliative Care Professional Development Framework and Skills Matrix Project for Allied health Professionals

Following the success of the Palliative Care Professional Development Framework and Skills Matrix Project in the community and acute settings, the GRPCC has reviewed and modified the project for Allied Health professionals. 

The skills matrix will  help to identify the individual learning needs for allied health professionals working with palliative care clients  and opportunities for their professional development.  It also provides regional direction for a coordinated development of relevant and required educational opportunities for staff.  

The skills matrix survey has had input from staff working within Allied Health. 

Click here to participate in the Palliative Care Professional Development Framework and Skills Matrix for Allied Health Professionals

'Palliative Care Professional Development  for Health Professionals' Booklet 

As part of the Palliative Care Professional Development Framework and Skills Matrix Project, a learning opportunities  booklet was developed.  The booklet  provides a list of palliative care resources, websites and education available to assist participants to develop their palliative care skill set in accordance to the National Palliative Care Standards.  The 'Palliative Care Professional Development for Health Professionals' Booklet is currently under review and will be available on the GRPCC website within the coming months.   
Transition to Specialty Palliative Care – Pilot course

The GRPCC has partnered with Palliative Care South East, Southern Metro Region Palliative Care Consortium and the Australian College of Nursing (ACN) to develop the ‘Transition to Specialty Palliative Care’ course.
The Transition to Specialty Palliative Care course is for RNs working in the community or inpatient setting looking to advance their palliative care knowledge. It is a bridge for nurses wishing to develop and consolidate their palliative care knowledge and commence post-graduate study.  After evaluation of the pilot, further study options will be available for nurses who wish to advance their training further.

We are very excited to report that the course is fully subscribed with metro and Gippsland students, and all participants remain active in the course.

Four of the seven workshops have now been completed in the pilot course. 3/7 workshops have been delivered dace to face and 1 online. Participants are working through the online learning provided by the Australian College of Nursing and a Quality Improvement (QI) Project, that constitutes the majority of the assessment for this course.  It is estimated that nurses will need to allow 2-3 hours study/week to complete the online learning and the QI project by October. 
If you are interested in finding out more about this course in the future, please send an expression of interest to the GRPCC at to be placed on the waiting list for 2022 course.
Strengthening support for palliative care clients in Gippsland (Stage 2) – Implementation of the Telephone Triage Tool

The GRPCC, in collaboration with the Gippsland Primary Health Network and Monash School of Rural Health continues to progress  the Telephone Triage Tool project to  support  generalist health professionals to deliver a consistent and evidence based approach to symptom management for clients with palliative care symptoms. The tool to support community palliative care clients in the afterhours time period is being used in health services, and community health services across Gippsland, focusing on continuity and consistency of care in the after-hours time period.
The tool for the primary health setting continues to be implemented, with interest in the application and implementation of the tool from community and  sub-acute services, and specialist palliative care services.
The tool for the Aged Care setting is currently being implemented into a number of residential aged care facilities across Gippsland. These facilities include health service managed aged care, community managed,  and private aged care facilities. Both the tools for primary health and for the aged care setting can be used by RN and ENs, and may be applicable to Allied Health Professionals caring for people with life limiting illness. Training for all tools is conducted on line, with flexibility  to access the training via the GRPCC’s private you tube channel.
We are very excited to see the further development, implementation and evaluation of these tools throughout 2021. If you or your organisation would like further information about these tools and the project, please  contact Carol Barbeler at the GRPCC.
Palliative Care News
2021/22 grants, awards, prizes and scholarships

Applications for a number of grants, awards, prizes and scholarships administered by ANMF (Victorian Branch) and other organisations are now open.

If you’re undertaking further study, professional development opportunities or a research project, applying for an award might be a way to help fund either all or some of your costs associated. 

Visit the ANMF website by clicking here for a full list of offers
Palcare Software

PalCare is a secure fully managed web-based electronic palliative care patient information management system and service that integrates acute and community care information into a single view of the patient, enabling health and support care providers to optimise the quality of care for their patient at the time and point of care.

PalCare steering committee have approved the PalCare new strategy project for GHA to progress with Stage 1 and Stage 2 of implementation. Current timeline will see implementation to Gippsland Palliative Care Consultancy Service (GRPCCS) reach completion early August with implementation roll out to other Gippsland Region Palliative Care Consortium (GRPCC) sites between now and October 2021. User training for all site representatives is scheduled for Monday 26th July.
Grief, loss and bereavement support for aged care 

Many people living and working in aged care facilities or home care may be feeling grief caused by lockdowns and social distancing.  

The Australian Centre for Grief and Bereavement have launched a new aged care specific support website to assist. 

Click here to view the website

On the 'Virtual' Couch

Getting to know our palliative care people

Carol Barbeler

Palliative Aged Care and Disability Resource Nurse &
MND Shared Care Worker (Gippsland)

Gippsland Region Palliative Care Consortium


What did you want to be when you grew up? Nurse!

Favourite holiday destination? Flinders Ranges

Buried, cremated or snap-frozen? Buried

What will be written on your headstone? Greatly loved (and greatly loved shoes)

Music at your funeral?  Book of Love- Peter Gabriel

What would your last outfit be?  Great dress (and great shoes!)

What are you reading now? Possession- A S Byatt

What would you have for your last meal? Fish (any type)

Which famous person would you like to invite to dinner? Not so famous, but Tom Kitwood, who wrote about personhood in people with dementia, and died before writing more… I have always wanted to know what else he had to say.

What lessons has your work life taught you?  Life’s short, buy the shoes… live well and without regret…!

Interesting Articles and Papers
Loss in the pandemic: when a loved one dies, being cut off from the grieving process can make things harder - Article by Glen Hosking Senior Lecturer in Psychology. Clinical Psychologist, Victoria University for The Conversation 

Development of a tool for defining and identifying the dying patient in hospital: Criteria for Screening and Triaging to Appropriate aLternative care (CriSTAL) - Magnolia Cardona-Morrell,1 Ken Hillman2

Dissonance in views between parents and clinicians of children with serious illness: How can we bridge the gap? Naomi T Katz, Jenny L Hynson, Lynn Gillam
Other Palliative Care eNewsletters
CareSearch - July 2021

End of Life Essentials Project News - July 2021

Safer Care Victoria - July 2021

PalliAged News - July 2021

Mailing Address:

Gippsland Region Palliative Care Consortium
c/- West Gippsland Healthcare Group
Landsborough Road
Warragul  Vic  3820
t:   03 5623 0684

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Gippsland Region Palliative Care Consortium · c/- West Gippsland Healthcare Group · 41 Landsborough Road · Warragul, Vic 3820 · Australia

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