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Tackling gaps in workers’ advance care planning knowledge

Advance Care Planning Australia (ACPA) has joined forces with Queensland Health and QUT to educate health professionals about palliative care.

The team will host a seminar covering topics like advance care planning across sectors, legal considerations and implementation.

Austin Health manager of communications Rebecca Camilleri said although awareness was growing, the limits of medical intervention are still not widely understood.

Camilleri said that there needed to be more literacy regarding the legal framework and coordination to ensure Queenslanders are empowered to make their end of life plans, and added nurses and health professionals should tread carefully when discussing the issue, particularly with patients with complex health conditions.

“An advance care plan (ACP) starts with questions. It’s more about how you want to live rather than how you want to die,” she said.

“You need to ask a range of questions like what they understand about their illness, what they value about living and who would speak for them if they can’t speak for themselves.”

Camilleri added that patients often reported a sense of relief after an ACP is complete with the sentiments rubbing off on their family.

Medical director of ACPA Dr Karen Detering will be joined by Queensland experts including Professor Liz Reymond from Queensland Health, QUT’s Dr John Rosenberg and Professor Ben White, director of the Australian Centre for Health Law Research.

The seminar will take place on November 30. Click here for more information. A similar event will be held later in the year in South Australia.

Camilleri joined us to tell us more.

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