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Aged care placement - palliative care

While each family situation has a different set of requirements, there are a number of standard questions that seem to be asked by our family clients. We hope the answers provided here will help you in your aged care placement activities.

Does aged care include "end-of-life" or palliative care?

End-of-life care, or palliative care, is care provided for people who have a life-limiting illness, with little or no prospect of a cure, and for whom the primary treatment goal is quality of life.

Palliative care uses a holistic approach managing pain and other symptoms, whilst also addressing the physical, emotional, cultural, social and spiritual needs of the person, their family and their carers. It focuses on living well until death.

How palliative care is managed in aged care homes

Palliative care in aged care homes aims to give the resident the best possible quality of life. In fact, the approach of some aged care homes reduces the need to move residents to another location such as a hospital or hospice. This allows the resident receiving care and their family to stay in their familiar environment and to feel supported, safe and comfortable.

Also, accreditation standards of aged care homes make them responsible for ensuring that symptoms such as pain are managed, and that the comfort and dignity of the resident is maintained at all times. In some cases, where residents have complex symptoms and the aged care team within the home needs more specialist palliative support, external palliative care services may be consulted.

The Guidelines for a Palliative Approach in Residential Aged Care Facilities have been developed to provide support and guidance for the delivery of a palliative approach in residential aged care homes across Australia.

All residential aged care homes in Australia have received a copy of the guidelines and national workshops have been held across Australia to raise the awareness of these guidelines and the benefits of using a palliative approach to care.

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