Southern Metropolitan Region
Palliative Care Consortium

June 2021

Monthly Update
In this update:

RACFs - complete our survey to help us advocate on your behalf
SMRPCC's annual clinical forum - save the date
MND podcasts with written transcripts available from SMRPCC
MND health professionals webinar series - from MND Victoria
Cultural diversity in ageing conference 2021 - free virtual conference on 17 June
Oceanic Palliative Care Conference - Early Bird registration extended to 26 May
Free domestic violence and response training - DV alert
Online calendar of local training and education opportunities
Education & training opportunities
     For GPs 
For those who want to further their palliative care knowledge
     For those working in acute hospitals delivering end-of-life care
     For health professionals working with people who have cancer
     For aged care nurses
Information & resources 
COVID-19 Vaccination: Shared decision making guide   
Recently launched: International Neuropalliative Care Society
     Video resource: Culturally safe discussions with Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people
     This is me: Information sharing resource     
 Report: Palliative care is core business for aged care
     Supporting older LGBTI people: Useful resources
Responding to COVID-19: Multiple links and resources
About the SMRPCC

Residential aged care facilities in the SMR

Help us advocate on your behalf!

We are currently undertaking a survey to develop a better understanding of the capacity of the aged care sector in the Southern Metropolitan region. If you have already completed the survey, Thank You!

The survey is VERY brief and asks a few questions that will help us to advocate on behalf of the sector and to plan activities over the coming year.

One of the first questions we ask is which facility you are from. This information is essential to identify which community palliative care or residential in-reach team you might be using. Were hoping to collect information for the entire region, which can then be segregated to support hubs or sub regions within the sector.

Access the survey at:

Share this update with your staff and colleagues 

 Print a copy for your lunchroom or notice board!

Sharing this monthly update is best done by forwarding it because it maintains the embedded hyperlinks. However, if you cannot forward this update to your staff or colleagues, you can print a copy and display it on your staff noticeboard.
The printed version includes instructions (on the last page) to view the update on our website and access the links to services, resources and educational opportunities.
Print this update

SMRPCC Annual Clinical Forum

Thursday 18 November 2021

We're optimistic that our annual regional clinical forum for people working in our regional specialist palliative care services will return this year for a day of sharing, learning and networking. The forum is scheduled for Thursday 18 November and will be held at the usual venue; Sandy by the Bay at the Sandringham Football Club.

Please save the date and we'll keep you updated in the coming months as the program and presenters are confirmed. 

From MND Victoria

Live webinars especially for health professionals

This webinar series will provide an overview of topics relevant for those health professionals working with people living with MND. It is also suitable for those wanting to increase their knowledge on particular areas of practice and learn more about MND.
There will be expert presenters sharing their knowledge and experience working in this field and time available for questions during each webinar. Topics and dates include:
  • OT & MND - Wednesday 16 June 11am - 12pm
  • MND and the NDIS - Wednesday 4 August 11am - 12pm
  • MND & respiratory considerations - Tuesday 5 October 11am - 12pm
  • MND & communication - Wednesday 10 November 11am - 12pm
Cost: $25 per webinar 
For further information or to register: Click here

MND resources available from SMRPCC

Free podcasts with written transcripts

Our podcast series includes eight podcasts, each with a written transcript, on various aspects of Motor Neurone Disease, its presentation and management. Topics include: **These podcasts are available on the PodBean App which can be downloaded for free from the Apple App Store or Google Play to your phone or PC and provides easy access to a variety of video and audio podcasts. To find our audio podcast(s) simply search for and follow SMRPCC's Podcasts.

Podcasts and transcripts are also available on the MND page of the SMRPCC website.

Cultural Diversity in Ageing Conference 2021

Free virtual conference on 17 June

The conference will showcase a line-up of speakers who are working to improve the ways in which aged care services can garner the voices of older people to shape a more equitable aged care system, now and into the future. Conference topics include: 

  • The importance of involving older people in the design, delivery and implementation of aged care services
  • Increasing the visibility of older people through story-telling
  • Inclusive strategies that promote better representation for older people to provide feedback to government on aged care services
  • Innovations in language services and resources 
  • Good practice examples from leaders in the aged care sector that promote inclusive services
The conference is relevant to anyone working in aged care services and/or advocating for older people across Australia. Once registered, you will have access to the conference recordings for 12 months.

For further information or to register: Click here.


Oceanic Palliative Care Conference

7 - 10 September

100 scholarships available to attend the virtual conference

Palliative Care Australia has launched a new scholarship program that will see over 100 scholarship recipients attend this year's virtual Oceanic Palliative Care Conference (21OPCC). 
Scholarship recipients will receive a full registration to attend all sessions at the virtual conference, offering access to peer-reviewed content, networking, and connection to sector opportunities. Successful applicants will also receive 12-month access to the event post-conference.

Scholarship applications close on Monday, 5 July 2021 and applicants will be notified the week commencing 19 July 2021.

For further information or to apply: Click here

Free Domestic and Family Violence Response Training

Domestic and Family Violence Response Training (DV-alert) is a free national training program designed for health, allied health, educational, childcare, and community support frontline workers.

Delivered by Lifeline Australia, DV-alert includes on-line learning courses, virtual workshops and face-to-face activities to support frontline workers to confidently: 
  • RECOGNISE signs of domestic and family violence
  • RESPOND with appropriate care
  • REFER people experiencing or at risk of domestic and family violence to appropriate support services
Click here for further information and to view the variety of training sessions available.
Education & training opportunities calendar

See upcoming local and online activities

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. 

Education & training opportunities

For GPs

Palliative care for general practitioners (online)

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

This 2-hour workshop is for General Practitioners based in Victoria who care for people with a life-limiting illness. Practice Nurses are also welcome to attend. 

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
  • Voluntary assisted dying in Victoria
  • Assessing and managing common symptoms

Facilitated by: Dr Rowan Hearn - Clinical Director Palliative Medicine, Calvary Health Care Bethlehem

When: Thursday 17 June 6pm – 8pm
Where: Online via your PC or device
Cost: Free
For further information and to register: Click here
Please note: This workshop includes a prerequisite activity – details are available through the link above.

For those who want to further their palliative care knowledge

Palliative care education virtual workshops

Presented by Banksia Palliative Care Service

Banksia’s Learning Centre team have transitioned our education to a virtual platform (MS Teams) and are now offering multiple sessions to attendees regardless of their location.

Education sessions are facilitated by highly trained and experienced Educators, with qualifications and expertise in all areas of palliative care. Topics and dates as follows: 

  • Session 1- Introduction to palliative care (14 July)
  • Session 2- Importance of psychosocial support (21 July)
  • Session 3- Pain management (28 July)
  • Session 4- End of life (4 August)
  • Session 5- Opioid conversions and syringe drivers (11 August)
  • Session 6- Symptom management part 1 (18 August)
  • Session 7- Symptom management part 2 (25 August)
  • Session 8- Palliative emergencies, treatments and assessment tools (1 September)

Time:  9am - 12.30pm
Where: Online via your PC or device 
Cost: $220 per session. Book 3 or more sessions and a discount of 20% applies. Book all 8 sessions at a total cost of $1,375 (save $385).
For further information: Click here
To access the enrolment form: Click here

Please note: This workshop series is scheduled for delivery again from October 2021. Session dates are available via the above links.

What is palliative care? It’s more than you think (webcast)

Presented by Palliative Care Australia & Parliamentary friends of palliative care

Palliative Care Australia together with two Parliamentary Friends Co-Convenors, the Hon Nola Marino MP and Senator Catryna Bilyk, held the May Parliamentary Friends of Palliative Care event during NPCW. The live webcast was recorded and is now available on demand. Speakers include: 

  • The Hon Nola Marino MP – Co-Convenor of the Parliamentary Friends of Palliative Care
  • Professor Meera Agar – Chair, Palliative Care Australia and Professor of Palliative Medicine, IMPACCT Centre, University of Technology, Sydney
  • Helen Walker – Deputy Chair, Palliative Care Australia and Clinical Services Coordinator, Laurel Hospice in Adelaide
  • Mike Sarah – Creative Director, Couch Creative
  • Les Winton – Researcher & Insight Provider, Winton Sustainable Research Strategies

When: On demand
Where: Online via your PC or device 
Cost: Free
To watch the webcast: Click here

For those working in acute hospitals delivering end-of-life care

States of Minds - Online modules

Presented by End-of-Life Essentials Project

In these new education modules there are resources to help health care professionals provide more encompassing care to a patient at the end-of-life. Topics include:

  • States of Mind at the End of Life which focusses on describing aspects of psychosocial and existential wellbeing in end-of-life care.
  • Assessing Patient States of Mind at the End of Life which focusses on screening for psycho-existential symptoms.
  • Clinical Management of Anxiety, Depression and More which focusses on the clinical management of anxiety, demoralisation, depression, and existential distress.
When: On demand
Where: Online via your PC or device 
Cost: Free
To access the modules: Click here

For health professionals working with people who have cancer 

Advanced Communications Skills Retreat 

Presented by Cancer Council Victoria in partnership with Deakin University 

Designed specifically to enhance core communication skills for clinical scenarios, this retreat covers topics such as delivering bad news and discussing end- of-life care.

Through small group activities, facilitated by expert clinicians, participants address communication challenges from their own clinical practice with simulated patients. This retreat provides a safe environment, guided by expert cancer clinicians, to really work on the difficult conversations and come away with enhanced skills.

When: 5 - 8 October 2021
Where: Yarra Valley Lodge, Chirnside Park
Cost: Fees apply. Click the link below for further information.
For further information or to register: Click here

For aged care nurses

palliAGED Introduction Modules for Aged Care 

Presented by Palliative Care Aged Care Evidence (palliAGED)

Theses interactive modules cover ten essential topics and will help aged care nurses to learn the fundamentals of palliative care, as well as prepare to support older persons at the end of life. 

The modules are designed for self-paced learning, are free to use, and come with supporting resources such as a printable manual, forms, validated tools, and Practice Tip booklet/sheets. 

When: On demand
Where: Online via your PC or device
Cost: Free
For further information or to access the modules: Click here

Information & resources

Shared decision making guide for people receiving palliative or end-of-life care 

The Department of Health has published this guide to help a person receiving palliative or end-of-life care, or their caregiver, make an informed decision about getting a COVID-19 vaccine. The guide will be updated as more information and new vaccines become available.

Recently launched: International Neuropalliative Care Society 

The International Neuropalliative Care Society (INPCS) has just been launched to promote the integration of palliative care within neurological services with the mission “to raise standards of care for all people affected by neurologic illness”. View the Society's website for membership details, meeting dates, resources and education opportunities.

Palliative Care Needs Rounds: Suite of free resources 

Palliative Care Needs Rounds (Needs Rounds) are a unique way of improving palliative care for people living in residential care facilities for older people. Needs Rounds have been tested in a clinical trial and the research team have developed a suite of implementation resources to help you to begin using Palliative Care Needs Rounds in your area. 


Video resource: Culturally safe discussions with Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people 

Discussing Choices – Indigenous Advance Care Plans – A Learning Resource, was developed by local Health Centre professionals working with local Anindilyakwa people and encourages end-of-life conversations, which can sometimes be difficult. It outlines the importance and benefits of an advance care plan for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people, such as the importance of country and passing on culture to future generations.

This is me: Information sharing resource 

This resource, developed by OlderCan, can be used by people of any age with any cancer type to share important information with their cancer team.

Visit the OlderCan website for additional resources to help older people make decisions about treatment and care and to make sure that their GP and cancer team are aware of information that is important to an older person with cancer.

Report: Palliative care is core business for aged care 

This new report, released by PCA highlights the alignment between PCA’s own eight key recommendations (Palli-8, PCA’s eight-point plan for palliative care) and the recommendations contained in the Commission’s Final Report.


Supporting older LBGTI people: Days of celebration & commemoration calendar and useful website

While not all older LGBTI people will be out to your service, providing relevant and inclusive celebrations, activities and events is a visible and meaningful way to communicate to LGBTI people that they are valued and welcomed at your service. Use the LGBTI Days of Celebration and Commemoration to promote inclusivity and educate staff and other service users. 

Also, the Not Another Second website has a range of information and resources, and a 14 minute film is very powerful and an absolute must watch for anyone interested in the lives and experiences of LGBT elders. "It is a reminder of the diversity of experiences and the often difficult journey, and different paths to being out, proud, and happy. Although from the US, a great resource for staff education, as well as for clients and (aged care) residents."

Responding to COVID-19

Information & resources 

For the latest COVID-19 health and clinical advice

Department of Health & Human Services

This website includes the most up-to-date Coronavirus (COVID-19) resources, information, plans and guides for health professionals working in Victoria.

Especially for those working in palliative care


Resources from Caresearch 

Caresearch has multiple web pages that list resources for palliative care and care at the end of life in the COVID-19 context and according to role, setting, or source.


Especially for those working in the aged care sector


Resources from DHHS 

The Department of Health and Human Services has a web page with information and resources to support the aged care sector in responding to the coronavirus disease.

Resources from ELDAC

ELDAC's 'Being Prepared for COVID-19 page is being updated regularly, with specific information for:
  • aged care
  • services and organisations
  • GPs and other health professionals
  • older people and their families
  • the workforce
  • people who speak languages other than English 

For those working with people with a CALD background


Fact sheets in easy-English and 56 other languages 

The Department of Health and Human Services (Vic) has created web pages and resources in 56 languages which provide Information, updates and advice about the outbreak of coronavirus (COVID-19). Topics include: 
  • Face coverings
  • Current restrictions
  • Advice for all Victorians
  • Support available
  • Resources

Information in audio and video format

Health Translations is the one site where people can access high-quality consumer-focused translated materials on COVID-19 produced by government & community agencies Australia-wide.
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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
Jane Newbound......Aged Care Project Officer......0433 418 
Stephenie Cook ......Training Coordinator ............ 0417 859

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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