Babita KC is a Registered Nurse working for Calvary Haydon Residential Aged Carewho attended a Placement in June 2021 with many in palliative care in Canberra’s palliative care services.
Babita completed a wonderful reflection that overviewed her placement and what she noticed and the impact the placement had her work back in Aged Care.
Thank you Babita for sharing this.
“Firstly, I would like to thank entire Clare Holland House – PEPA team for offering this opportunity to enhance my learnings and skills regarding End-of-Life care/Palliative Care.
On the very first day of my placements, I was allocated to work in Clare Holland House under the supervision of Senior RN on duty where I met a patient with 3 continuous syringe driver which I had never came across during my practice as a Nurse. RNs on duty were very helpful: she taught me entire process of medication preparation, loading, monitoring and about the importance of titrating medication dose to minimize the adverse effects.
On second day of my placement, I was allocated to home care team. Me and RN on duty went to one house to change syringe driver of patient which completely new experience for me to dispense and administer medication outside the hospital/healthcare setting.
On third and fourth day of my placement, I was allocated with the PEACE: We went to several nursing home as per urgent and non-urgent referrals. During that period, I learned to early identification of patient deterioration who is approaching end of life (signs and symptoms like increase pain level, shortness of breath, anxiety, twitching, drop in body temperature, incontinence, constipation, delirium and restlessness), how to introduce patient to palliative approach care, how to provide psychological and spiritual support to patient and family and to help patient/NOK to generate Advance care planning focusing on comfort care of patient.
After completion of my placement, I have been using my learnings in my current practice: I have been sending urgent and non-urgent referrals to PEACE team as per patient need/deterioration, which in results, our patients were able to receive appropriate end of life care/palliative care without any discomfort/pain. Additionally, we have been getting several positive feedbacks from family members for being proactive and introducing palliative care on time.
On October 2021, our facility had COVID outbreak during which one of our households was on complete isolation, we had lost all our clinical staff and care staff. I was looking after the End-of-life care of our lost souls (residents): monitoring early signs of deterioration, referring to PEACE team and GP’s, assisting with personal care (oral care), commencing on syringe driver, monitoring pain and agitation, administering PRN anticipatory meds as charted, updating NOK and providing emotional support. During that period, I received handwritten appreciation note from lost soul family which was very emotional and proud moment for me.”