APHN-Hospis Malaysia Workshop: Grief & Bereavement Care

This 2-day intense workshop on Grief & Bereavement Care concludes our final series of palliative care workshops for the year.

Associate Professor Amy Chow from the University of Hong Kong together with Dr Gilbert Fan from Singapore, will be facilitating the 2-day course which is designed towards a very interactive and engaging experience. This workshop will be immensely valuable to clinicians, psychologists, social workers  and counselors managing palliative care and care of the dying.

Registration submission can be made online at www.hospismalaysia.org/griefandbereavement/ and emailed to education@hospismalaysia.org.

APHN Mini Interview Series – Dr Masanori Mori, Japan

This interview is the second of the mini-interview series featuring members of the 17th Council of the Asia Pacific Hospice Palliative Care Network (APHN).

This month, we interviewed Dr Masanori Mori, one of the Co-opted members[i] of the Council. Dr Mori is a palliative care physician at Seirei Mikatahara General Hospital, located in Hamamatsu city, Shizuoka Prefecture, Japan.

Challenges in clinical practice and unique approaches

I was trained and practice palliative care in oncology for 10 years, during which, I had faced many challenging problems, but there are two distinct situations I encountered which I will like to share.

The first was providing palliative care for adolescent and young adult patients (aged 18 – 39) when I was a fellow, partly because we were in the same generation. We could provide symptom management, but many of them had severe psychosocial & spiritual pain, especially regarding them having to face early, premature death. I remember clearly a patient asking me in front of his family, “What would you do in my shoes?” It got me thinking. What would I do being in my 30s and facing death? I thought there was no right answer to that, so I had some difficulty when faced with such questions.  We had a good patient-physician relationship. I felt like I was asked the question not only as a physician, but as a person. So I shared a part of my life with the patient, and we had some good conversations. I was sharing what my hobby was, which was “Haiku”, a very short form of Japanese poetry. After he passed away, the patient’s family engraved the haiku poetry I wrote for him on his tomb.

I feel that when we are facing such situations where a patient has significant psychosocial distress, what we could do is to sit down near the patient, try to understand where his or her suffering comes from, and adopt a multidisciplinary approach to discuss how best to support the patient.

The second challenge I have faced was, no matter the improvements in palliative medicine, occasionally we still have difficulty in relieving severe symptoms at the end of life. For example, shortness of breath just before death can be quite difficult to manage even with the use of parenteral opioids. We sometimes do palliative sedation to relieve intractable symptoms like refractory shortness of breath. But before its initiation, it can be difficult to say how much palliative treatment is sufficient enough to say “this symptom is indeed refractory”, even with the best evidence and discussions among palliative care experts. Going forward, we need to improve strategies of symptom management at end of life

One unique approach I can share is that recently, there have been some trends to the early integration of oncology and palliative care in Japan. One of such activities is a “two-physician system” for advanced cancer patients; while a patient is receiving anticancer treatment by an oncologist, a palliative care physician within or outside the institution sees the patient as the other main physician, not as a consultant, alongside the oncologist. I feel that this new, collaborative approach allows for a smooth transition to palliative care, lessening the sense of abandonment felt by patients. However, this practice is still in the pilot stage in Japan.

One thing I hope to do during my term on the APHN Council is to contribute in the area of research. For example, I am interested in cross-cultural studies in Asian and Pacific countries to understand similarities and differences in palliative care practices. Such data could help us appreciate the situations of each country, and lay the foundation for future collaboration.

Life and inspiration

My friends and colleagues are usually surprised to know that I am interested in Haiku poetry because it is not very popular among people of my age. (Haiku poetry is usually popular among older people in Japan.) I have 4 kids, so I also enjoy playing with them.

There were many people who inspired me in my life; my dad and mum, my previous and current mentors in US and Japan, and Dr Shigeaki Hinohara who was one of the founders of the APHN. Many of them share similar characteristics in terms of how to view the world, manage challenges, take collaborative actions, and enjoy life. They all have certain aspects which became my inspiration in one way or another.

For example, Dr. Hinohara’s writings and works are very inspirational. I was so inspired by his altruism, perspectives, and medical and social activities that I visited him at St. Luke’s International Hospital 10 years ago when I was a palliative care fellow in Houston. Dr. Hinohara was 95 years old then. It was about 10-15 minutes when we talked; Dr. Hinohara listened to me, and shared his vision of not only launching a graduate medical school but also ceasing wars worldwide. He left the world at the age of 105 but he pioneered in numerous fields in medicine ranging from preventive medicine to end of life care , as well as medical and nursing education. Moreover, Dr. Hinohara contributed to the entire society by publishing a number of million-seller books such as “Living long, living good”, and initiating something very new such as so-called “Smart Senior Association”.

As a new member, I very much look forward to working with you all at APHN!

By: Joyce Chee, APHN Executive
The article first appeared in the APHN newsletter Issue 34.
All information is correct at time of publishing.
__________________________________________________________
[i] The APHN Council consists of 7 members to be appointed by sectors on a rotation to be determined alphabetically according to the name of the sectors (Constitution 12.2a), 7 elected members, and 6 Co-opted members.

SHC-LCPC Multidisciplinary Forum – Supporting Children Whose Parents are Dying from Cancer

Register online at https://www.duke-nus.edu.sg/lcpc/shc-lcpc-multidisciplinary-forum or email lcpc@duke-nus.edu.sg for more information and enquiries.

BNI Palliative Care Scholarships 2018

Hospice NZ is committed to growing leaders in hospice palliative care. Thanks to the ongoing support and generosity of our national partner, BNI New Zealand, we are delighted to offer study scholarships for 2018.

Scholarship applicants must show the relevance of their chosen study to their particular role and ongoing professional development needs within hospice palliative care. They must be either employed by a member hospice or hold current individual membership of Hospice NZ.

The scholarships will cover tuition/ course fees up to $1,000 for postgraduate study provided by an accredited institution. Applications meeting the criteria will be considered by the Hospice NZ education committee. Applications for larger course fee costs will be judged on a case by case basis.

Applications will close at 5pm on Wednesday 29 November 2017. Successful applicants will be notified by Wednesday 13 December 2017. We will then require written confirmation and formal acceptance by Friday 12 January 2018.

Please click here for an application form and further information.

SG Pall eBook

The Lien Centre for Palliative Care (LCPC) is pleased to launch the SG Pall eBook, a mobile- friendly online resource for palliative care tips. This product arose from a  collaboration between LCPC and a group of specialist Palliative Care practitioners from various institutions across Singapore. The  eBook aims to provide quick and  easy access to basic palliative knowledge (through their mobile phones) for  busy healthcare professionals on the go, and is suitable for all care settings.

Access the SG Pall eBook here!

APHN-Hospis Malaysia Workshop: Pain & Symptom Management

One of the objectives of palliative care for patients and their families is to improve their quality of life (QOL). Ensuring good pain and symptoms control for patients with life-limiting illness will help achieve this objective. This three-day workshop deals with aspects of both pharmacological and psychological issues on pain and symptom management so that patients with life-limiting illness are given the opportunity to live out their days with meaning and with as little distress as possible.

Thus, successful pain control requires a multidisciplinary approach to treatment that addresses all aspects of care and suffering. As usual, our workshop concentrates on small group settings and will be most beneficial to healthcare providers working in a palliative or oncology setting, and other related specialties, with a general interest in palliative care.

Registration submission can be made online at www.hospismalaysia.org/painandsymptom/ and emailed to education@hospismalaysia.org.

WHPCD 2017: Health Screening and Information Booths by Singapore Hospice Council

Join the Singapore Hospice Council and their member organisations to celebrate the World Hospice and Palliative Care Day with health screening, information booths and live performances to engage the public to learn about palliative care.

Find out more here.

 

What is your organisation doing for the World Hospice & Palliative Care Day & Voices for Hospices 2017? Let us know in the comments below or email us at aphn@aphn.org!

International Palliative Care Network Conference 2017

The International Palliative Care Network Conference 2017Moving Knowledge Across Borders, is now accepting abstracts to be considered for the Lecture Series and Poster Exhibition.

  • Palliative Care professionals from all disciplines and regions of the world are encouraged to participate.
  • Awards for select poster categories
  • Expand your audience – submissions from past conferences are accepted.
  • E-certificate awarded to the first author of poster and lecture.
  • Conference registration and fees required to present final poster or lecture.
  • Click here for abstract submission guidelines
  • Deadline for submission:  October 15, 2017

Conference Registration is now open.  As a member of APHN, you receive the discounted registration rate.  Apply for a scholarship to cover registration fees.  Visit the 2017 International Palliative Care Network Conference homepage to access links to register, apply for scholarship, view speaker info, etc.

SHC-LCPC Multidisciplinary Forum – Managing the Gut Feeling

Register online at https://www.duke-nus.edu.sg/lcpc/shc-lcpc-multidisciplinary-forum or email lcpc@duke-nus.edu.sg for more information and enquiries.

WHPCD 2017: Patient Get-together by Pallium India

Pallium India will be organising “Thalolam 2017” in conjunction with the World Hospice Palliative Care Day 2017. About 500 participants, including patients with life-limiting diseases and their family patients, will gather on 14 October 2017 for the get-together.

Read more here.

 

What is your organisation doing for the World Hospice & Palliative Care Day & Voices for Hospices 2017? Let us know in the comments below or email us at aphn@aphn.org!

WHPCD 2017: Hospice Film Festival/Book Fair by Hospice Foundation of Taiwan

In conjunction with the WHPCD 2017, Hospice Foundation of Taiwan will be holding a Film Festival featuring ‘Oscar et le Dame rose’, ‘The Fault in Our Stars’ and ‘In His Chart’. There will also be a feature talk by movie director Wu Nien-jen and a book fair focusing on palliative and hospice care.

 

What is your organisation doing for the World Hospice & Palliative Care Day & Voices for Hospices 2017? Let us know in the comments below or email us at aphn@aphn.org!

A film on persons at end-of-life: a real record of their last expressions

The original article is written in Chinese by the Shanghai Hand in Hand Care Developing Centre

At the quiet and grim second floor of the hospital where they filmed, the director and videographer were acutely aware that the scenes they captured may be the last records of the patients’ lives. He also pointed out the his videographer that they may well be in the same circumstances in 50 years, looking back that the folly in their youth or the joy of pursuing fame and fortune.

Read the full article here. Please note that the article is written in Chinese.

 

What is your organisation doing for the World Hospice & Palliative Care Day & Voices for Hospices 2017? Let us know in the comments below or email us at aphn@aphn.org!