End-of-life Care in Long Term Care

In the last 15 years there has been significant change in the responsibility of Long Term Care (LTC) homes. Most residents of LTC remain there until the end of their life, with lengths of stay averaging almost two years depending on the home. Providing care at end-of-life has become vital to LTC practice, however, palliative care has not been incorporated into the culture and self-perceived role of LTC. Further, homes are not equipped with some of the specialized knowledge and skills and dedicated resources to provide palliative care. Only once these gaps and barriers are addressed will we be able to create formal palliative care programs in LTC homes. Having these programs would enhance LTC homes’ capacity to provide resident centred care until the resident dies, allowing them to die at what they consider home with maximum comfort and dignity. In turn, improving capacity in LTC to provide palliative and end of life care will also help to alleviate unnecessary and unwanted transfers to hospitals and hospices.

We believe that we need to:
1) Expand  Advance Care Planning
2) Promote Palliative Care Programs in Long Term Care Act
3) Enhance Resources to allow Long Term Care Homes to create hospice palliative care programs
4) Strengthen Interprofessional Collaboration within LTC homes and with Community 
5) Integrate hospice palliative care Philosophy into Resident Centred Care

The CHPCA, in partnership with the Quality Palliative Care in Long Term Care Alliance (QPC-LTC) aim to change the common view of long term care and hospice palliative care through knowledge translation and communications initiatives. Keep an eye out for the QPC-LTC section in our upcoming issues of AVISO and the Monthly Update.

For more information on the QPC-LTC Alliance, please go to www.palliativealliance.ca.

Quality Palliative Care in Long Term Care: Tools for Change

On Wednesday October 17th, 2012 the Quality Palliative Care in Long Term Care (QPC-LTC) Alliance will be hosting a national conference to showcase evaluated strategies and tools that can support Long Term Care Homes to develop and deliver palliative care programs. Decision-makers in long term care homes or community partner organizations that support palliative care in long term care are encouraged to attend.

The following objectives have been set for the conference:

  • Provide a forum to promote palliative care innovations for long term care homes
  • Showcase effective practices developed through the QPC-LTC Alliance and by international collaborators
  • Generate strategies to address gaps and barriers for developing palliative care programs in long term care homes
  • Identify effective ways for decision makers to be catalysts for change in long term care homes.

Early bird registration is now open! Please go to www.palliativealliance.ca to register now or contact Jessica McAnulty at jmcanult@lakeheadu.ca  or 807-766-7268.