It takes a special kind of person to care for someone with a life-limiting illness but Louise Taylor and the palliative and supportive care team at Cabrini wouldn’t have it any other way.
The Nurse Unit Manager of Palliative Home Care and Nurse Consult has been working at Cabrini for 27 years and was part of the original development of the palliative and supportive care service.
This month marks the 20th anniversary of the service, which has grown to a large integrated service across all Cabrini sites and in the local community, providing more than 800 admissions to Cabrini Prahran, 7000 community visits and more than 1400 visits and appointments across the other Cabrini sites a year.
Ms. Taylor said palliative care provided invaluable care and support for patients with a life-limiting illness.
“Palliative care is about allowing people to have the best quality of life they can have for as long as possible,” she said.
“There aren’t many jobs where you get to come in at that time in a person’s life and help them. We assist patients to live well and to die comfortably and peacefully, as well as supporting their families through that process.”
Cabrini Palliative and Supportive Care Director of Nursing Janine Stockley said there were benefits in referring patients early to palliative care.
“This allows patients to access support for complex pain and symptoms, obtain advice on financial and social matters and prepare children and families for the future,” Ms. Stockley said.
“Palliative care is about teamwork and keeping the patient and family at the centre of care. This is integral to the mission of Cabrini,” she said.
Cabrini Chief Executive Michael Walsh said the anniversary was a testament to the staff who operated the service.
“Our Palliative and Supportive Care service has a wonderful reputation in the community and that is because of the staff behind it,” Dr. Walsh said.
“Patient-centred care is at the heart of everything we do and this service epitomizes our commitment to putting patients first and tailoring care to the individual’s needs. I am incredibly proud that we have reached this milestone and I am sure the service will continue for another 20 years to come and hopefully many more.”