Palliative care education and training collaborative

Since 2003, the Australian Government Department of Health (DoH) has funded Queensland University of Technology (QUT) to undertake the national coordination and project management of the Program of Experience in the Palliative Approach (PEPA) and implement the Palliative Care Curriculum for Undergraduates (PCC4U). In May 2015, the Department announced funding for a new Palliative Care Education and Training Collaborative (incorporating PEPA and PCC4U). The DoH continues to fund the Palliative Care Education and Training Collaborative in the 2017-2020 funding phase to build on the achievements of these previous initiatives.

The project takes a collaborative, whole-of-workforce approach to building the capability and capacity of the health workforce to provide quality palliative care to all Australians. The specific activities for the Collaborative focus on four broad areas.

1. Program of Experience in the Palliative Approach (PEPA)

PEPA aims to enhance the capacity of health professionals to deliver a palliative approach to care by:

  • Providing clinical placements and experiential workshop opportunities for the non-specialist palliative care health and aged care workforce across rural, remote, and metropolitan settings
  • Enhancing linkages between specialist and non-specialist palliative care providers to improve the quality and coordination of care
  • Providing resources and development opportunities for host specialist palliative care services to create learning organisations with a commitment to, and skills in, supporting ongoing learning.

For more information visit www.pepaeducation.com

2. Palliative Care Curriculum for Undergraduates (PCC4U)

The aim of PCC4U is to encourage the integration of palliative care training within entry to practice courses in the University and Vocational Education and Training (VET) sectors and in relevant post-graduate curricula, thereby improving the skill and confidence of the health and aged care workforce to care for people with palliative care needs. PCC4U achieves these aims by:

  • Promoting and sustaining the inclusion of the principles and practice of palliative care in all health care training, including University and selected VET sector courses, through development and maintenance of flexible learning resources and tailored support for educators;
  • Providing a platform for innovation and research in palliative care education.

3. Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Palliative Care Workforce Development

The Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Palliative Care Workforce Development project has been an integral component of both PEPA and PCC4U projects. In this phase, we will build on our previous work with Indigenous communities to further highlight the unique strategies required to provide culturally appropriate learning experiences for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander health care providers and build cultural safety capabilities for those who support learning in  palliative care settings.

4. National Palliative Care Workforce Action Plan

This project component aims to develop a blueprint for palliative care workforce development in Australia by evaluating the ability of Australia’s health workforce to deliver palliative care services now and in the future. Using the elements of the Palliative Care Workforce Development Model developed in previous phases of the Collaborative’s work, this activity will provide a description of the workforce requirements for various specialist and non-specialist service settings and describe specific actions to achieve required workforce capabilities.