Napier Street Aged Care Services (NSACS) in South Melbourne undertook a reverse PEPA placement with four of their staff and a PEPA mentor. This was to improve the knowledge, skills and confidence of the staff in providing a palliative approach for the people in their care.
Prior to the placement they completed an audit of recent deaths at the facility to identify areas of improvement which they could work on during the placement. Together with the mentor they created a learning plan to achieve their outcomes.
At the completion of the placement they achieved the following:
- Increased knowledge in the palliative approach through formal education provided by the mentor.
- Reviewed and updating the “palliative care box” and its contents, to reflect palliative care needs identified.
- Undertook advance care planning education and practice – doing their own Advance Care Directive(ACD) to enable a greater and understanding around the experience of advance care planning; using the Take Control Booklet from the Office of the Public Advocate, and the Person’s Preferences form developed for those who lack capacity to complete a legal ACD.
- Created a bereavement resources pack – a gap identified in the death audits conducted previous to the placement.
- Created an evidence-based palliative care information folder for colleagues using Caresearch and ELDAC resources, in both a hard copy and softcopy.
- Reviewed their End of Life Care Pathway and adopted the ELDAC End of Life Care Pathway as it was an improvement on theirs
- Post the placement the participants conducted in-service education for 30 mins over 2 -3 days so that all staff could attend. They were inclusive of not only health care professionals (nursing) but lifestyle and catering – a WHOLE of workforce approach! The teaching material was accessed from Caresearch and topics covered included:
i) 3 levels of palliative care (A palliative approach, Specialist Palliative Care and End of Life (Terminal care)
ii) Identifying common symptoms
iii) Importance of identifying, reporting and documenting deterioration iv) Interventions and evaluations as care staff “.…I will continue to share my knowledge regarding a palliative approach with new staff. I am also actively auditing NSACS after death using the ELDAC’s after death audit and identifying areas for improvements as a continuous improvement…..” (M Fan – RN)
As a mentor for NSACS it was a privilege to work alongside Bryan, Marianne, Karen and Daria 4 people who have a passion and desire to improve the care of the people in their care. One of the changes to practice implemented was to create a symbol – the Tree of Life – to use outside a room of someone who was dying. The purpose was to remind staff before they entered the room that someone was dying….providing respect and dignity and an WHOLE of workforce approach to education in palliative care…” (F McLeod NP/Reverse PEPA Mentor).
Outcomes report written with permission from M Fan, G Villaflor (NSACS) by Fiona McLeod PEPA project officer PEPA Vic. For inclusion in PEPA National newsletter – good news story)