Southern Metropolitan Region
Palliative Care Consortium

March 2020

Email Update
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In this update:

We need your help - a special request from SMRPCC
MND podcast #8 - Maintaining hope
Applications now open for PEM program - 3 places available
2020 Clinical Forum: Covering all the bases - registrations now open
Consider the Carer: Updated edition now available for palliative care clinicians
Palliative care & the NDIS - resources to support navigation
Print this update and display on your staff noticeboard
PCV Volunteers Conference - registrations are open
National Advance Care Planning Week - watch ACPA's new video 
Education & training opportunities
     For health professionals caring for ATSI people
     For those working or interested in perinatal palliative care   
For those working in aged care 
     For GPs and nurse practitioners
     For those working with CALD patients
Education & training opportunities calendar 
Information & resources
     Allied health in Australia & its role in palliative care
     Pineapple Project season 4: Death
     Supporting difficult conversations with older aged care residents
     Resources to improve the care of older diverse Australians
     Exploratory analysis of barriers to palliative care 
     2020 Multi-faith calendar 
     Short films to raise awareness of dementia in multicultural Australia 
About the SMRPCC

A special request from SMRPCC

We need your help!

Dear readers,

As you may know that the SMRPCC provides training and resources to Disability Group Homes across the region.

Following the recent changes in Group Home structures, we have been unable to get contact details for homes in our region.

If you work in a group home in the Southern Metro region, please contact us so that we can add or update your details on our database and contact list. 

If you know somebody, who works in a Group Home in our region, please ask them to contact me at 

Thank you very much and we look forward to hearing from you.

Warm regards,
Tanja Bahro
Manager SMRPCC

MND and Palliative Care: Maintaining hope

Podcast #8 now available

Our MND Shared Care Worker, Robyn Reid, has produced a podcast series on MND and the various aspects of its management. If you work in aged care or primary health and have a client with MND, these podcasts will help you to better understand the illness and improve your care.
This is the eigth and final podcast of the series. In this podcast, Robyn discusses how health professionals can be a constant and unwavering source of comfort and support and are in fact instruments of hope. Click here to listen to the podcast and click here to download the transcript.

All MND & Palliative Care podcasts and transcripts are available on the MND page of the SMRPCC website.

Program of Experience in Motor Neurone Disease (PEM)

3 places available for 2020

Express your interest by 31 March 

PEM participants spend 3 days at Calvary Health Care Bethlehem and 1 day at Motor Neurone Disease Victoria to:
  • Learn best practice in the management of MND
  • Create new networking opportunities
  • Understand the needs of MND clients with respect to palliative care
  • Increase your knowledge and skills about MND
  • Gain expertise in your own professional discipline around the management of MND and palliative care
All Health Professionals working in Palliative Care Services in Victoria can apply.

Participants from palliative care agencies in the Southern Region will be funded by the Southern Metro Palliative Care Consortium. All other participants will need to fund their placement through their employer.

For further information or to express your interest in participating in the program, contact Robyn Reid, MND Shared Care Worker, Southern Metropolitan Region at or phone 0428 264 446.

SMRPCC Annual Palliative Care Clinical Forum

Registrations are now open

The 2020 Forum - Covering all the bases will be facilitated by Bonnie Miller, Leadership Development & Conflict Management Consultant and will provide the opportunity for:
  • Services to present current research and quality initiatives
  • Investigating the opportunities arising from patient complaints
  • Dr. Margaret O'Connor, AM to present on her 2019 Churchill Fellowship
  • Discussing the impact of VAD on service deliver
When: Thursday 23 April 9.30am - 3.30pm (registrations, tea & coffee from 9am)
Where: Sandy by the Bay, Sandringham Football Club, Sandringham
Cost: Free
For further information: View the flyer
To register: Click here 

PLEASE NOTE: Registrations are only open to health professionals & staff working in SMRPCC Member palliative care services.

Consider the Carer

Updated edition now available

The second and improved edition of our Consider the Carer resource is now available. 

This resource has been specifically designed for health professionals working in palliative care to better understand the full impact of the caring role and to develop prevention strategies.
This comprehensive document is best used online as it contains pertinent links to the websites of organisations that could be of assistance as well as links to further information.

Please feel free to distribute the link to the Consider the Carer resource widely amongst your staff and other interested health professionals, but please note: This resource is not for carers, it’s about carers.

View the resource at or visit the Resources & Links page on the SMRPCC website: 

Palliative Care and the NDIS

Useful resources to help navigate the National Disability Insurance Scheme (NDIS)

The response to our NDIS and Palliative Care fact sheet suggests a strong interest in, and need for, information to support those working in palliative care and aged care to better understand and navigate the NDIS. 

We've done some investigating and here are some additional resources to further inform and support you in relation to aspects of the NDIS:

NDIS & Health Working Together
  • This is a guide to assist health professionals and NDIS staff to work with people with disabilities - from hospital admission to discharge (produced by the Summer Foundation).
Getting the language right: Writing for the NDIS
  • This is a health practitioner's guide to writing reports, letters, forms and assessments for the NDIS (produced by the Summer Foundation
10 steps to excellent NDIS therapy reports
  • This resource is primarily designed as an information source for therapists as they prepare reports for NDIS participants. It can also be used as an information source when commissioning therapy reports, or to determine whether a report is of a high standard (produced by VALID).
National Disability Insurance Scheme (NDIS) review and appeals flow chart
  • This is a quick reference guide which outlines the processes for  NDIS Internal Review (Review of a reviewable decision) and NDIS Appeals in an easy to follow flow char format (produced by DARU).

...and check out our palliative care and disability Facebook page

The Southern Metropolitan Region Disability Project aims to coordinate information and activity for people with disabilities who require palliative care, in particular those living in a Group Home. To support this aim, the Project has a Facebook page which disseminates events, information and training opportunities relevant to staff working in group homes and interested palliative care specialists. 

Click here to go to the Facebook page then "like" the page to receive information in your Facebook timeline.  

Please note: you must be logged into your Facebook account for the link to work. If you prefer to search for the page, it's called Southern Metro Palliative Care Consortium Disability & RACF projects.

Do you have a staff noticeboard?

Print this update and pin it up! 

Electronic distribution of our update is preferred however we recognise this is not always possible.

We now have a pdf version of the monthly update available which you can download, print and display.
Click here to print this update

Volunteering 2020 - the future is now

Registrations now open

The conference will focus on what needs to be done now to ensure that in future volunteering will be more inclusive to provide the best support possible for our diverse communities.
This conference provides an excellent opportunity for Volunteers and Leaders of Volunteers from a range of organisations including palliative care, health care, aged care, chronic illness, ethnic communities and LGBTIQ+ community to share experiences, learn from diverse and innovative approaches, and explore what volunteers can do for their self-care and wellbeing.

Visit the Volunteers Conference website for further information  including the conference program, registration fees and how to register your attendance.

New video to increase awareness and uptake of Advance Care Planning

Education & training opportunities

For health professionals who care for Aboriginal & TSI people with a life-limiting illness 

Workshop: PEPA Culture Centred Care - Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Perspectives

Presented by VACCHO and PEPA

Attend this Workshop to understand issues facing Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people with their journey into the dreaming. 

This free, interactive workshop for palliative care providers will focus on considerations for implementing cultural safety into practice. Topics include:

  • Impact of history and intergenerational trauma
  • Importance of kinship and community
  • Culturally appropriate communication
  • 'Sorry business'
When: Tuesday 24 March 9.30am - 2.15pm
Where: East Melbourne
Cost: Free
For further information or to register: Click here

For those working or interested in perinatal palliative care 

Victorian Perinatal Palliative Care Symposium

Presented by the Victorian Paediatric Palliative Care Program

This inaugural multidisciplinary event aims to provide a perinatal palliative care update and facilitate discussion about the challenges and pathways forward to improve the provision of perinatal palliative care services in Victoria. The day will consist of a mixture of case-based discussion, parental experiences and a facilitated panel discussion.

When: Friday 20 March 8.30am - 5pm
Where: Royal Children's Hospital, Parkville
Cost: $110 - $130
For further information: Click here 

For those working in aged care 

Palliative Approach in Aged Care

Presented by Program of Experience in the Palliative Approach (PEPA)

This workshop is designed for health care professionals working in aged care with limited or no palliative care experience. The aim of the workshop is to develop an understanding of a palliative approach for people with a life-limiting illness and their families. Topics include:

  • Principles of palliative care
  • Communication
  • Providing care
  • Advance care planning
  • End-of-life care
  • Caring for yourself

When: 5 May 9.00am – 4.00pm (registration from 9.00am for 9.30aPEPAm start).
Where: Atura Dandenong, Eumemmerring
Cost: Free
For further information or to register: Click here

For GPs and nurse practitioners 

Palliative Care Education for General Practitioners

Presented by Program of Experience in the Palliative Approach (PEPA)

This interactive education session utilises group discussion and case studies to provide a greater understanding of palliative care. Topics include:

  • Recognising patients who need palliative care
  • Communicating about end of life issues
  • Advance care planning
  • Voluntary assisted dying in Victoria
  • Assessing and managing common symptoms
A recommended pre-requisite for this workshop is completion of 6 online GP learning modules developed by the Palliative Care Education and Training Collaborative. 

When: 22 April 6.00pm - 9.00pm
Where: Rydges, St Kilda
Cost: Free
For further information or to register: Click here

For those working with CALD patients 

Culture Centred Care Workshop

Presented by Program of Experience in the Palliative Approach (PEPA)

This workshop is designed especially for people working in the health and aged care sector who care for culturally diverse clients/patients with life-limiting illnesses. Palliative care health professionals are also welcome.

The objective of the workshop is to enable health professionals to move beyond "cultural awareness" and develop confidence and practical skills to deliver effective and respectful services to people from culturally and linguistically diverse backgrounds. Topics include: 

  • How cultural values and world views affect experience and expectations of palliative care
  • How to elicit culturally significant information in a sensitive way
  • How to plan for the culturally relevant needs of clients, families and friends
  • How to identify when a communication problem is occurring and apply effective strategies to resolve it

When: 29 April 9.45am – 4.00pm 
Where: East Melbourne
Cost: Free
For further information or to register: Click here

Education & training opportunities calendar

Education and training opportunities are listed on our website calendar and can be viewed as a list, by calendar month or by day.  Simply use the View As button on the right side of the page to make your selection. 

Information & resources

Report: Allied health in Australia and its role in palliative care 

This review was conducted by Caresearch and Flinder's University and aimed to understand the context of allied health practice in the Australian setting and hence how they might be supported to increasingly engage with palliative care.

Podcast: Pineapple Project season 4: Death

Join comedian Jan Fran in this ABC podcast series as she learns the steps to master the logistics of death. 

New resources to support difficult converstaions with older aged care residents

The What Matters Most resources from Palliative Care Australia are designed to be used with health or aged care staff. They can help older people work out what would be right for them if they were really sick, or at the end of their life, rather than waiting for a crisis to occur.


New resources to improve the care of older diverse Australians

ELDAC's new 'Diverse Populations' resources provide guidance for health professionals and aged care workers to support palliative care and advance care planning to improve the care of older diverse Australians. 


Reports & a summary policy paper: Exploratory analysis of barriers to palliative care

The Department of Health has released a series of reports and accompanying Summary Policy Paper  

These documents report on key barriers and promising approaches for improving access to and experience of palliative care for 9 population groups within Australia.


2020 Multi-faith calendar

Spiritual Health Association has produced a colourful multi-faith religious and cultural events calendar for your use in 2020 which reflects the many major religious and cultural events for the year ahead.


Raising awareness of dementia in multicultural Australia

Moving Pictures, an innovative multi-media project, aims to change this through the production of 15 short films co-produced with people from Hindi-, Tamil-, Mandarin-, Cantonese- and Arabic-speaking communities. For each language, there are three films: Detection and Diagnosis, Navigating Care, and the Carer Journey.

These films are based on the stories and lived experiences of carers of people living with dementia, and the expert views of key service providers.


Who we are & how you can contact us: 


Name                            Role                                        Phone                            Email
Tanja Bahro.............Consortium Manager............ 0418 584 106
Tess Storr................Administration Officer.............0428 485 136 ..........
Robyn Reid ............ MND Shared Care Worker....0428 264 446............
Stephenie Cook ......Training Coordinator ............0417 859 297............
Jane Newbound.......Aged Care Project Officer.....0433 418 

Our members include:

Ex Officio Members include:

  • Cabrini Palliative Care Services
  • Bolton Clarke
  • Southern Metropolitan Integrated Cancer Service (SMICS)
  • South Eastern Melbourne Primary Health Network (SEMPHN)

For general inquiries to the SMRPCC please email 

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