For patients receiving palliative care, their families and carers
What is Palliative Care?
The WA Cancer and Palliative Care Network is actively working towards an integrated statewide model of palliative care in Western Australia.
Palliative Care, as defined by the World Health Organisation, “is an approach that aims to improve the quality of life of patients and their families facing problems associated with life-threatening illness. This is achieved through the prevention and relief of suffering by means of the early identification, impeccable assessment and treatment of pain and other physical, psychosocial and spiritual problems.
- Provides relief from pain and other distressing symptoms
- Affirms life and regards dying as a normal process
- Intends neither to hasten nor postpone death
- Integrates the psychological and spiritual aspects of patent care
- Offers a support system to help patients live as actively as possible until death
- Offers a support system to help the family cope during the patients illness and in their own bereavement
- Uses a team approach to address the needs of patients and their families, including bereavement counselling, if indicated
- Will enhance quality of life, and may also positively influence the course of illness
- Is applicable early in the course of illness, in conjunction with other therapies that are intended to prolong life, such as chemotherapy or radiation therapy, and includes those investigations.
Advance Health Directives
Advance Health Directives are legal documents in which adults can set out in writing their decisions about future treatment. They are used in all Australian states and territories but take on different forms and names.The decision to prepare an Advance Health Directive is a very personal one. Find more information on the current Western Australian Advance Health Directives.
Palliative Care Resources
Palliative Care Models of Care
- Paediatric and Adolescent Palliative Care (PDF 394KB)
- Palliative care (PDF 533KB)
- Rural palliative care (PDF 410KB)
- Perinatal palliative care (PDF 1.55MB) | (MS Word 902KB)
- Consumer Carer Focus Group - Communication at end-of-life in hospital (PDF 1.44MB) | (MS Word 2.05MB)
Publications of interest
- WA Clinical Senate debate - Great expectations: Planning for expected deaths in acute health settings (external site)
Palliative Care Resources for Consumers
- Palliative Care Medicine and Symptom Guide (PDF 3.08MB)
- Child Respite - Information for Families (PDF 1.1MB)
- WA lcp: Information Sheet for Patients and Families (PDF 40KB)
- Caresearch (external site)
- Palliative Care Australia (external site)
- Palliative Care Western Australia (external site)
- When a parent or close relative is dying - toddlers (PDF 751KB)
- Talking to children when someone is dying (PDF 779KB)
- Saying Goodbye to Someone Special - 5-11 years (PDF 777KB)
- Saying Goodbye to Mum - 5-11 years (PDF 772KB)
- Saying Goodbye to Dad - 5-11 years (PDF 755KB)
- Saying Goodbye to Someone Special - A Guide for Teenagers (PDF 575KB)
- Saying Goodbye To Mum - A Guide for Teenagers (PDF 575KB)
- Saying Goodbye To Dad - A Guide for Teenagers (PDF 755KB)
- Understanding the dying process (PDF 148KB)
- Understanding the dying process - Italian (PDF 42KB)
Resources relevant to babies and children
- SIDS and Kids – not-for-profit organisation dedicated to the elimination of sudden and unexpected infant deaths, supporting bereaved families and funding research into stillbirth.
- Sands - miscarriage, stillbirth and neonatal death charity supporting anyone affected by the death of a baby; working to improve the care bereaved parents receive by healthcare professionals and breaking the silence and taboo of baby death in today's society.