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Integrating the Principles of
Palliative Care in Caring for People with Dementia

I just returned from a month of travel in Ontario, Denmark and England. I attended the Hospice Palliative Care Ontario conference, then the European Association of Palliative Care Conference in Copenhagen, and then the Public Health and Palliative Care Conference in Bristol, England.

One of the themes from the European Conference was caring for the older adult. At the European conference it was a privilege to meet Dr. Ladislav Volicer, who gave a wonderful presentation, 'Do We Have the Evidence to Make Decisions About Artificial Hydration and Nutrition in People With Dementia?'When I was researching about caring for people dying with dementia,with Janice Robinson, I came upon one article by Volicer that summarized all the key research and points that we have discovered in all our readings.  Jenny van der Steen addressed a few of the controversial issues in the 'White paper defining optimal palliative care in older people with dementia'. Elizabeth Sampson spoke about the challenge to prognosticate for people dying with dementia and suggested that perhaps we need to help people learn to live with uncertainty. I look around me and I wonder, who knows about living with uncertainty? Who can teach us to cope well when we do not know what is ahead?

I do not have a video of these presentations, but following in the same theme, I am linking you to a video (below) with Dr Romayne Gallagher talking about pain in people with cognitive impairment. This video is part of a series produced by Canadian Virtual Hospice. It is a must watch for all caregivers of people with dementia, or caregivers of people who are less able to report their discomfort.
- Kath

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Our mission is to create resources that help front line caregivers, including Personal Support Workers (also known as Health Care Assistants, Nursing Assistants and Hospice Aides), provide excellent care for the dying person and their family.

If you are new to hospice palliative care then we hope that the website, newsletter, videos and podcast library will provide you with a foundation of understanding.  If you are experienced in hospice palliative care, we hope that you can use these resources to support, teach and mentor your colleagues.

If you are an educator we hope that the materials will reinforce what you know, and that the Instructors Guide will help you prepare education sessions that will stimulate your students learning, and facilitate you sharing from your rich experience while meeting the education standards and vocational learning outcomes.

Pain and Cognitive Impairment: Reading the Cues
Dr. Romayne Gallager is a leader in Palliative Care in Canada, and a leader in caring for people with dementia. In this video Dr Gallager discusses pain management for people who have dementia. She also provides some great practical tips on assessment and gathering information.
Namaste Care™ is a program designed to improve the quality of life for people with advanced dementia. 

Namaste Care™ can be offered in skilled nursing facilities, assisted living communities or as part of a hospice program.  For more details about this program read ‘The End-of-Life Namaste Care™ Program for People with Dementia”. 

Selected by Provider Magazine as one of the Top 20 to Watch in 2013, Joyce Simard M.S.W. has more than 35 years of experience in health care settings as a social worker and dementia care specialist. Joyce has developed three programs to improve quality of life for people with dementia: The Memory Enhancement Program, for people in the early stage; The Club, for nursing home residents in the middle stage; and Namaste Care™  for people in the advanced stage of dementia.
Boost your, and your students’, learning with these palliative care education podcasts. Open access to our extensive podcast library means you can listen and learn at school, at home or when you travel – as many times as you want! 

Check out our podcast library..
A Model to Guide Hospice Palliative Care: Based on National Principles and Norms of Practice (the Norms) was first released in 2002. Over more than ten years, the field has enthusiastically embraced the norms, using them to develop programs that provide high quality comprehensive person and family-centred hospice palliative care. In 2013, the Canadian Hospice Palliative Care Association (CHPCA) established an expert advisory committee to review and revise the Model to Guide Hospice Palliative Care to reflect current practice and experience. The document has been streamlined to focus on the principles and Norms and provide only the most used information. It amazes me what a good job they did of trimming the book down. 
Read more... ran a short story on the Frances Montgomery Personal Support Worker Hospice Palliative Care Award for Excellence given to Monika Logwiniuk.

You can read the coverage here...

Upcoming Conferences, Speaking Engagements and Events

APSCU Annual Convention and Exposition: Outcomes 2025
June 2-4, 2015
Denver, CO, USA
We're thrilled to be unveiling our new American resources, 'Essentials in Hospice and Palliative Care: A Resources for Nursing Assistants' at the APSCU conference!

CCO Conference 2015
June 24-26, 2015
Niagara Falls, ON, Canada
We'll be at table #34 - if you're there, please stop by!

We'll be in Toronto on June 23rd, and Niagara falls June 24-26.
If you would like to connect with Kath while she's in your area,
send us a message!