An action plan for palliative care will be a step closer to reality following a Nov. 14 community forum.
The delivery of palliative-end-of-life care in the Shuswap has been identified as an area needing improvement.
The forum will feature the results of a community survey that was carried out in the summer, an opportunity to share ideas on how palliative care can be improved and a discussion on next steps.
“It’s exciting because it’s collaborative with the committee comprised of the Shuswap North Okanagan division of Family Practice, Interior Health and the provincial government,” says Dr. Adele Preto, family practice rep, who says an action plan will be developed following the forum.
She says the forum is the last effort to get community input and educate participants, something that will be accomplished with speakers who are well-versed in palliative care in semi-rural and rural areas.
Barb Pesut RN will speak on promoting quality care for individuals with life-limiting chronic illnesses in rural areas and another nurse, Terri Odeneal, will discuss a collaborative community approach to excellent end-of-life care.
Participants will have the opportunity to brainstorm as part of focus groups and share ideas on how palliative care in the Shuswap can be improved.
The information gathered will be used in developing an action plan that will be presented to the tripartite collaborative committee for acceptance and implementation by the end of January 2013.
“For acceptance and implementation, it has to satisfy three criteria – improve patient care and satisfaction, improve caregiver satisfaction and three, be cost-effective,” says Preto. “If we can show that we can deliver more and better care while being cost effective, then it should be a go ahead.”
Preto is hoping for a good turnout at the Nov. 14 forum to be held at 6:30 p.m. at the Prestige Harbourfront Resort.
“Sooner or later, we all die, so we’re all potential consumers,” she says. “I think if we want the service to be as good as it could be by the time our turn comes around, we have to work at it.”