North Western Melbourne Primary Health Network (NWMPHN) is one of 31 PHNs in Australia funded by the Australian Government, tasked to improve the health of people who live in their region. Each PHN might do this differently as the needs and health of the community in each region varies. The North Western Melbourne Primary Health Network region includes Melbourne’s CBD and inner city and the fast-growing suburbs in the north and west. There are about 1.64 million people living in our region.
This project is part of the Australian Government’s Greater Choice for At Home Palliative Care measure initiative, to improve palliative care coordination through Primary Health Networks (PHNs).
Precious Time is one of a number of NWMPHN activities developed to address the needs of our community, with the specific aim to support people to die well, including enabling people to be cared for and to die at home as they wish.
The Precious Time platform has been designed in collaboration with people, carers and clinicians. The platform is based on the recommendations of the 2018 Dying Well community forum and with additional research that was conducted into the social, medical, financial and relationship systems that people navigate as they age, get sick and die.
“We believe that creating a holistic approach to finding end-of-life services will improve quality of life, enhance emotional resilience and create opportunities for culturally appropriate and values-led choices for dying people and their carers.” Portable
The platform helps people find information on death, dying and bereavement and local services that meet their needs. It also provides information about topics to help stimulate conversations about dying, along with resources that can support end-of-life care at home and raise greater community awareness of local services.
The ‘Dying well’ community forum was conducted by North Western Melbourne Primary Health Network in 2018. The Community Panel report created by this forum included 16 key recommendations. Precious Time has been developed to address a number of these, most specifically:
Menu for end-of-life care options.
‘Dying well is more than physical, medical or pharmaceutical. To die well also needs to address the social, cultural, emotional and spiritual needs of the individual person. Knowing what your options of support are, will enable you to access complementary services which promotes agency and empowerment over end of life experience.’
Education, communication, conversations about ‘dying’ and End of Life choices
‘Conversations and education can normalise death to enable the person to plan and die well; reduces anxiety, stress and fear of the unknown when facing life crises and assists people to work toward a plan for what ‘dying well’ looks like to each individual.’
For more information visit nwmphn.org.au