end-of-life discussions

Libby’s story.

This story first appeared in the June 16, 2022 issue of our Good Grief! newsletter. What is pharmacy’s role in improving palliative care? A vital one, according to those who know. We’ve talked a lot in these pages about the need to improve access to palliative care and a 2022 … Read more

Families can be broken by misunderstandings when someone dies.

Families can be broken by misunderstandings when someone dies

After three decades working at Wollongong City Council’s memorial gardens and cemeteries, Operations Manager John Chilby has told the Illawarra Mercury he’s lost count of the times he’s seen families broken by misunderstandings when someone dies. “It causes more grief and break-ups between families, so we want to try and … Read more

13 questions about aged care for your local politician

Photo by Eberhard Grossgasteiger on Unsplash

Updated 15 March, 2022. Aged Care Reform Now (ACRN) asked if we would give their ‘13 questions – where do you stand on aged care’ campaign some publicity. It’s a year since the Royal Commission into Aged Care Quality and Safety – but there hasn’t been enough improvement to aged … Read more

Why birth and death are similar – a nurse’s perspective.

Why birth and death are similar - a nurse's perspective - Pippa White

By Julia Grieves For anyone who’s been pregnant, especially for the first time, the looming reality of giving birth becomes an event etched into the calendar of one’s future. For most however, unless undergoing a booked in C-section, there is no clear grasp of exactly when this event will occur, … Read more

Excruciating and gut-wrenching, says Kerri-Anne Kennerley.

Studio 10 TV Interview with Kerri-Anne Kennerley and Joe Hildebrand

“Okay, what do you call ‘a good death?’,” Kerri-Anne Kennerley asked. Kerri-Anne was asking pertinent questions – prompted by her own painful experience and this has become one of my favourite interviews. Kerri-Anne’s beloved husband John Kennerley had only died four months before, in February 2019, following a long illness … Read more

It’s legal to withhold life-sustaining medical treatment.

It’s legal. You’re allowed to say ‘no’ to medical treatment. And if you’re the person responsible, you’re allowed to say no on behalf of the person you’re responsible for. But there’s still confusion about this – both in the broader community, in hospitals and nursing home. So let’s unpack it. … Read more

Crucial end of life Conversations

The many allied health professionals oncology patients have to navigate can be overwhelming. Photo - National Cancer Institute.

by Sandra Moon. ‘I feel his organs are shutting down,’ my mother said on the phone. But how? Two days before Mum had rung me to ask for help getting Dad to the emergency ward at our local hospital. I burst into tears worried that he may enter hospital and … Read more

Christine Pedley reflects on ‘doing death well’.

Christine Pedley

Today we’d simply like to share a lovely, very real story from by our LinkedIn connection Christine Pedley who lives at Ferntree Gully,  Victoria. Christine has been an authorised marriage celebrant for 11 years.  She “co-creates ceremonies that are always bespoke. I assist and offer guidance in conducting any celebration … Read more

It’s not what you see in the movies, says Kathryn Mannix.

It's not what you see in the movies, Kathryn says.

We love this. Kathryn Mannix is a palliative care specialist from the UK who we admire. And she’s recently written a book on approaching death, With The End In Mind. This is a similar take to mine – which is not as surprising as it may seem. Because when people … Read more

Improving palliative care in nursing homes.

Kathleen Wurth blogged at Caresearch recently.

We’re still hearing uncomfortable stories from readers about the deaths of their elderly in nursing homes. Sometimes only a little thing went wrong, making the family sad for the dying person, and undoing other good intentions. Other times it was a bigger problem. So today we’re shining the spotlight on … Read more

HelloCare discusses ‘One happy year’.

HelloCare discusses 'One-Happy-Year' in an interview with Colleen Cartwright.

Of the many articles I read last year, this one really lingered. It’s an interview with the always provocative, always fiercely practical Colleen Cartwright. Journalist Caroline Egan published it in HelloCare in November last year. Colleen is a specialist in aged care, advance care planning and the rights of the … Read more

What happens when nurses are afraid at their patients’ end of life?

What happens when nurses are afraid at their patients end of life?

When Dr Katrin Gerber shared her thoughts about the important topic of pain management at the end of life, it brought back many memories. My mother died in a nursing home in late 2011, and the haunting question lingered – did Mum get the pain relief she needed as she … Read more

The challenges continue.

The challenges continue for those of us grappling with Covid-19 restrictions and the impacts for the elderly in aged care. This has become a very personal dilemma for me. My 96-year-old father has developed a sense of being imprisoned and I must say his distress over this has caused my … Read more

Is the place I want to be cared for the place where I want to die?

Dr Katrin Gerber

The work of Dr Katrin Gerber has caught our eye. This is because whenever the question comes up about where someone wants to die, it can be hard to gauge accurately, and Katrin has studied it intensely. As a kindly volunteer, sitting with palliative care patients, I remember being struck … Read more

I did it my way

My Way (Charity Single) By Margaret Mackie & Jamie Lee Morley

The favourite expression of some Anglican friends is: “the best is yet to come.” They’re referring to life after death, and it’s a very comforting thought. But for 83-year-old Scottish Margaret this has turned out to be true before then, right at the end of life, while she lives in … Read more