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Title: Palliative care in a general teaching hospital. 2. Establishment of a service.
Austin Authors: Woodruff, R K;Jordan, L;Eicke, J P;Chan, A
Affiliation: Palliative Care
Issue Date: 18-Nov-1991
Publication information: Medical Journal of Australia; 155(10): 662-5
Abstract: To assess the first year of operation of a palliative care service in a general teaching hospital.A retrospective analysis of 241 terminally ill patients referred to the Austin Hospital Palliative Care Service during its first year of operation.The occurrence and relief of pain, the occurrence and management of social and psychological problems, involvement of allied health services and the place of death.Unrelieved pain was the most frequent medical problem but, with appropriate medical management as well as input from other members of the multidisciplinary team, all patients achieved satisfactory pain control. The occurrence and severity of social and psychological problems was greater than expected. Most of the patients were discharged home and referred to domiciliary palliative care services; one-quarter of patients were able to die at home, one-third died in an inpatient hospice, and the remainder died in hospital.The Service was able to achieve most of its stated aims and has generated a much improved appreciation of the palliative care needs of patients with terminal illness and their families within the Hospital. A multidisciplinary approach to the management of terminally ill patients is crucial, and this Service has been successful despite limited staffing because of the willing involvement of other Units and Services in the Hospital. The difficulties inherent in the evaluation of a palliative care program (quality of life, cost-effectiveness) are discussed.
Journal: Medical Journal of Australia
Type: Journal Article
Subjects: Hospital Departments.organization & administration
Hospitals, General
Hospitals, Teaching
Palliative Care
Appears in Collections:Journal articles

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