August Digest of News for Palliative Care Specialists

Every month, the PACED team prepares a digest of international materials and news about palliative care.
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Could Palliative Sedation Be Considered An Unnamed Euthanasia? Survey Among Oncology Specialists.

In 2016, a new right to deep and continuous sedation until death, with the discontinuation of life-sustaining methods such as artificial feeding and hydration, was established in France for patients at the end of life. It was unprecedented that feeding and hydration were directly defined as life-sustaining procedures.

Such a practice raises serious ethical and practical questions for specialists. The authors of the article found that the majority of respondents support the implementation of continuous sedation until death as part of end-of-life care. However, there is confusion with the practice of euthanasia, which increases the risk of misunderstanding within medical teams and among patients' families.

A New Approach to Education at St Christopher's CARE: Learning through Personal Stories.

In the article "When Community and Professional Learning Collide" Maaike Vandeweghe, along with her colleague Mary Hodgson, shares details of the new personalized approach to education at St Christopher's CARE - state-of-the-art education centre at the St Christopher’s hospice (UK). They have become co-leads of CARE and set the goal of providing relevant education for both professionals and the community.

Their approach is centered around the importance of personal experience. Education should revolve around people and their stories. The article emphasizes how narratives and personal stories can stimulate positive changes and innovations in the field of palliative care.

The authors invite specialists to participate in this transformative process by organizing a learning festival. This event will showcase how professionals can lead and influence discussions on important topics, such as advance care planning.

How a Personal Story Transforms a Career: A Nurse's Tale of Encountering Palliative Care for the First Time When Her Father Faced Cancer Diagnosis.

As a nurse, Misty Hartley was profoundly impressed by how timely palliative care positively impacted both her father's morale and the ability of their entire family to spend his final days together most meaningfully.

Misty shares that from that point on, she focused her efforts on learning as much as possible about palliative care and sharing this knowledge with others. Today, Misty Hartley is the Vice President of Palliative Care at "Compassus," an American company that is a national leader in post-acute care, offering a comprehensive range of home-based care services, including palliative care and hospice.

Palliative Care for Individuals with Intellectual Disabilities: What Should It Be Like?

Providing end-of-life care for individuals with mental disorders is a complex task, and professionals in the field of intellectual disabilities often have limited experience in palliative care. While in certain establishments such as nursing homes and hospices, palliative care is provided structurally, some facilities serving mentally incapacitated patients may never involve palliative care specialists. This leads to a lack of experience in end-of-life care provision.

For this reason, researchers aimed to address three questions: (1) What is the current policy and practice of palliative care in psycho-neurological services in the Netherlands? (2) How do participating specialists assess their competency in providing palliative care? and (3) According to these specialists, what improvements are necessary in palliative care?

Collection of the Top 15 Palliative Care Podcasts

Discover the best palliative care podcasts selected from thousands online podcasts, ranked based on traffic, social media followers, and novelty.