West Moreton health care providers have come together to develop a comprehensive system of care for people approaching the end of life (see graphic above). This system is referred to as “an ecosystem of care” because all elements are connected and rely on each other to ensure quality and person-centered care at the end of life.
To enable this ecosystem, a regional Care at the End of Life Committee has been established which includes representatives from hospital services, home based services and the local community with the goal of working together to improve care at the end of life for the people of West Moreton.
The Care at the End of Life Committee has developed an exciting action plan for West Moreton for the next three years. The actions include:
- Improving community understanding of care at the end of life and how to be a compassionate community
- Building the capacity of all health professionals in the West Moreton region to provide quality care for people as they approach the end of life
- Enabling coordination between care providers (professional and non-professional) through establishing integrated health pathways for end of life care
Melinda Parcell, Executive Director Rural and Communities and Ipswich Hospital West Moreton Health explains that “Care at the end of life is everyone’s business. We all know somebody who has been diagnosed with a serious illness and most of us have experienced the death of a loved one”.
“We tend to think of death and dying as happening behind closed doors in hospitals and being managed by doctors and nurses. The reality is that whilst most deaths occur in hospitals, the clear majority of care in the last year of life happens in the community and is provided by family and friends”, Ms Parcell says.
West Moreton Health believes that more can be achieved for our community when we are Caring Better Together. The local West Moreton community, family and friends are critical to this ecosystem, by supporting hospital and home-based services. Darling Downs and West Moreton Primary Health Network and Queensland Ambulance Service play an important role by providing the vital link between hospital and home-based care.
If you would like to know more about the Care at the End of Life Committee, or if you would like to get involved, please contact the West Moreton Health Service Improvement Team via firstname.lastname@example.org.