- Advance care planning
- Carers and respite
- Grampians region information
- Grief and bereavement
- Palliative care
- Seniors, ageing and residential care
If a link no longer works, a website may have moved or up a dated document; enter the document name in a search engine e.g. Google, Chrome.
Note: Australian states and territories have different jurisdictions governed by different legislation. In Victoria, legislation covering specific parts of an advance care plan, or directive, includes the Medical Treatment Act 1988 and Guardianship and Administration Act 1986; guardianship information is also at the Office of the Public Advocate. Different legislation applies in the jurisdictions of other states and territories.
When you start advance care planning, to complete an advance care directive, make sure you follow the information for the state, or territory, in which you live.
Visit and browse the information, the intent of information on advance care planning is essentially the same, with different information appealing to different people.
Enduring Power of Attorney (EPA)
- Office of the Public Advocate
- Enduring Power of Attorney (financial and legal)
To choose someone to make decisions on your behalf about your financial and legal affairs, in the event of you losing, at some time in the future, the capacity to make these decisions yourself.
Enduring Power of Attorney (Medical Treatment)
- Office of the Public Advocate
- Enduring Power of Attorney (Medical Treatment)
To choose someone to make decisions on your behalf about your medical treatment, in the event of you losing, at some time in the future, the capacity to make these decisions yourself.
Enduring Power of Guardianship
- Office of the Public Advocate
- Enduring Power of Guardianship
To choose someone to make decisions on your behalf about your personal, lifestyle and health decisions, in the event of you losing, at some time in the future, the capacity to make these decisions yourself.
- Office of the Public Advocate Back to Top
- ‘Take Control’
‘Take Control’ has clear information about powers of attorney and guardianship, step by step instructions, including all the forms you may need.
Refusal of Medical Treatment
- Office of the Public Advocate
- Refusal of treatment certificate
Medical treatment for a current medical condition can be refused by signing a Refusal of (medical) Treatment Certificate; this certificate cannot be used to refuse palliative care, i.e. reasonable pain relief and food and water while you are still able to eat and drink. If you have appointed an attorney under an enduring power of attorney (medical treatment), they can refuse medical treatment on your behalf.
Advance Care Planning (Department of Health, Victoria)
- Department of Health
Includes video clips ‘Starting the conversation’, ‘Putting it in writing’, ‘Making it easier for everyone’ and ‘Closing thoughts’.
- Advance care planning FAQs
Frequently asked questions for Victoria.
A national framework for advance care directives
- This publication (Sept 2011) points out different and common ground across the jurisdictions of Australia. Page 8 has an excellent patient journey chart; the chart helps clarifies what could be happening when and what to do about advance care planning.
Advance care planning for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Island people
- Taking control of your health journey (Aug 2013) a Victorian publication.
- Advance care yarning (Jun 2012) a South Australian publication.
Carer Support Programs
- This audit document, (Aug 2012) by the Victorian Auditor-General’s Office (VAGO), examined whether the Department of Health and the Department of Human Services effectively recognise and support carers.
Guide for family and friends
- The book Supporting a person who needs palliative care – a guide for family and friends provides a comprehensive and practical resource for family and carers of people diagnosed with a life threatening illness who require palliative care. It provides strategies to support them in what can be a very difficult but often rewarding experience.
Respite services for children with life threatening illness
- Respite services for children with life-threatening conditions – final report (2009), The Nucleus Group.
This report maps respite services and funding available in Victoria for children with a life-threatening condition and to identify whether the current range of options meets demand.
Demographic Analysis of Care Needs and Service Provision
- National Respite for Carers Program Demographic Analysis of Care Needs and Service Provision
For each local government authority in Grampians region, this document provides information on demographics, people giving help and people needing help.
A Guide for living well with Memory Loss and Dementia
- Grey Matters – A Guide for living well with Memory Loss and Dementia in the Grampians Region (Oct 2012) Department of Health
This guide “has been developed to help assist you, the person with memory loss, your family and carers, to access relevant information and support that is specific to living well with dementia.”
Services for people with dementia and their carers Back to Top
- A guide to services for people with dementia and their carers (2012) Department of Health
This guide is a resource for service providers to support timely provision of information, supports and referrals that meet the expressed needs of people with possible dementia and their carers.
Dementia practice guidelines for HACC assessment services
- Strengthening assessment and care planning Dementia practice guidelines for HACC assessment services (May 2012) Department of Health
This guide aims to (i) develop consistency of practice by describing the policy, concepts and thinking behind Living at Home Assessments (ii) describe assessment and care planning skills and techniques which will assist assessors in moving to a person-centred, active service model (ASM) approach and (iii) provide information and resources to support HACC assessors in their day-to-day practice.
Planning dementia services
- Dementia services pathways – an essential guide to effective service planning Department of Health and Ageing
This guide aims to inform and assist jurisdictions with service planning, by developing service pathways. The guide describes the services required to meet the needs of people living with dementia and their carers across the dementia continuum. Service pathways are useful as a planning tool to encourage key service providers to participate in planning activity and to coordinate service responses.
- Behaviour management – a guide to good practice (May 2012) Dementia Collaborative Research Centres
Evidence-based guidance for clinicians in their role of assisting residential aged care facility staff, community care staff and family members caring for persons living with dementia, who present with behavioural and psychological symptoms of dementia (BPSD).
Being with people with dementia
- Relate, motivate, appreciate – an introduction to Montessori activities (Jul 2013) Alzheimer’s Australia Vic
This introductory booklet is part of the Relate, Motivate, Appreciate: A Montessori resource to promote positive interaction with people with dementia.
Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people Back to Top
- Providing culturally appropriate palliative care to Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people, Victorian Aboriginal Community Controlled Health Organisation
Contrary to popular belief ATSI culture is not a single culture; rather it comprises a number of different cultures which share some common values and beliefs. The practice principles in the publication have been developed to provide a framework for palliative care service providers to examine their own policies and practice in relation to the requirements of ATSI peoples.
- Providing culturally appropriate palliative care to Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people
These practice principles aim to assist palliative care services meet cultural needs of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander patients, their families and communities; the principles are supported by organisational and personal strategies for reflecting on practice.
- Sad News, Sorry Business: Guidelines for caring for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people through death and dying
These guidelines respect varying Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander tribal groups, each with their own practices, and provide general guidance for carers of Aboriginal or Torres Strait Islanders people facing dying and death.
Diverse communities Back to Top
- An outline of different cultural beliefs at the time of death (Oct 2011) Loddon Mallee Palliative Care Consortium
Brief resources to assist healthcare workers understand different cultural or religious approaches to death and dying. The resources should not be seen as prescriptive or fully detailing all the intricacies of a given religion or culture, nor is intended to be a definitive statement indicating how individuals may wish to be treated during or after their death.
- Multicultural Palliative Care Guidelines (2000) Palliative Care Australia
The words ‘death’, ‘dying’ and ‘cancer’ are taboo for many cultures and create immediate difficulties in palliative care. Each participant in a conversation also represents various factors to the other, in areas such as age, status, and gender and, at times disability. Questions that we may regard as ‘standard’ may offend or embarrass others.
Palliative care for culturally and linguistically diverse communities (Aug 2009)
This resource was developed to help palliative care providers care for people from CALD backgrounds and to build sensitivity to basic cultural differences; it considers social, emotional, physical and spiritual needs. This resource helps develop strategies to provide culturally appropriate services specifically for Cambodian, Chinese, Indian, Iranian, Sri Lankan and Vietnamese communities.
- Cultural responsiveness framework: guidelines for Victorian health services (2009) Department of Health
This guide outlines the newly endorsed Cultural responsiveness framework for Victorian health services. The framework encompasses a strategic and whole of organisation approach and is designed to be aligned with health services’ strategic planning processes. The framework is based on four key domains of quality and safety, organisational effectiveness, risk management, consumer participation and effective workforce.
- Strengthening diversity planning and practice – Grampians Regional Diversity Plan 2012-15 (May 2012)
This document provides pertinent demographic and health issues in the Grampians region for HACC diversity planning, e.g. in Grampians region, life expectancy is lower than the Victorian average and the burden of disease is higher.
- Victoria in Future 2012 Department of Planning and Community Development
Victoria in Future 2012 sets out projections of population and households in and across Victoria based on observable, “on the ground” changes in the population.
- One (1) page population and demographic profiles for local government areas.
- Indicators of community strength in Victoria: framework and evidence, why social capital can build more resilient families and communities (July 2011) Department of Planning and Community Development
Indicators of Community Strength measure Victorian’s perception of their (i) local area amenity, (ii) ability to get help when needed, (iii) community participation and (iv) select social attitudes.
- Change and disadvantage in regional Victoria: an overview (May 2011) and Change and disadvantage in the Grampians region (Mar 2011)
Department of Planning and Community Development
This information identifies small areas of disadvantage based on ABS Index of Relative Socio-economic Disadvantage (IRSD) 2006. This index combines 2006 Census of Population and Housing census variables relating to income, education, occupation, wealth and living conditions and ranks localities on a continuum of advantage to disadvantage.
The socio-economic indices for areas (SEIFA) index combines information from a number of variables from the 2006 population census. It ranks areas on a continuum of advantage to disadvantage. The average score for Victoria as a whole is 1000, and 986 for regional Victoria; scores below average are relatively disadvantaged.
- Regional health status profile 2012 Grampians region Department of Health
Includes: key determinants of health, health status and health system performance for each local government area in Grampians region.
- Local government area profiles 2012 Grampians Region Department of Health
This document provides a variety of key information about each local government area in Victoria in a single reference publication to support service planning and policy development. Information includes: community capacity, socio economic factors, health and wellbeing and service system and performance.
- Town and community profiles 2011 Geographic, service, population and social profiles of Victorian communities in the Grampians region Department of Health
More detailed than Local Government Area Profiles 2012 Grampians region (above). Provides services providers with an understanding of the characteristics of communities in which the work/live; at the town/suburb level, includes: population, geography, services, facilities, social, cultural and health characteristics.
Bereavement support standards Back to Top
- Bereavement support standards for specialist palliative care services (Nov 2012) Department of Health
The bereavement support standards have been developed for use in all Victorian government-funded, adult, specialist palliative care services including community, inpatient, acute and consultancy services.
- A systematic review of the literature on complicated grief (Mar 2011) Department of Health and Ageing
“Complicated Grief” in this review is grief involving the presentation of certain grief-related symptoms at a time beyond which is considered adaptive. These symptoms include (i) separation distress, such as longing and searching for the deceased, loneliness, preoccupation with thoughts of the deceased and (ii) symptoms of traumatic distress, such as feelings of disbelief, mistrust, anger, shock, detachment from others, and experiencing somatic symptoms of the deceased.
Victorian state policy
- Strengthening palliative care: Policy and Strategic directions 2011 – 2015 (2011) Department of Health
This policy provides details about the priorities and actions for palliative care and should be read in conjunction with the priorities of the Victorian Health Priorities Framework 2012–2022: Metropolitan Health Plan.
- Strengthening palliative care: Policy and strategic directions 2011- 2015 Implementation strategy (2012) Department of Health
This strategy sets out the actions that will be taken towards achieving the policy’s vision, which is to ensure that Victorians with a life-threatening illness and their families and carers have access to a high-quality palliative care service system that fosters innovation, promotes evidence-based practice and provides coordinated care and support that is responsive to their needs.
- Strengthening care for children with a life-threatening condition (2008) Department of Human Services
This policy outlines the principles underpinning care for neonates, infants, children and adolescents with a life-threatening condition, and their families and the relationships that are critical to providing care in an appropriate and timely way.
- After-hour palliative care framework (Feb 2012) Department of Health
Access to after-hours support has been a requirement for all Victorian community palliative care services since 1997. The Department of Health’s policy and funding guidelines define business hours as normally falling between 7 am and 4.30 pm Monday to Friday, not including public holidays. All other times are ‘after-hours’. The guidelines describe the minimum level of service for after-hours community palliative care including (i) telephone advice to carers and families about symptom management if required and (ii) a nursing visit if the service assesses that a visit is required and it is safe for staff to visit.
Additional palliative care resources Back to Top
- The IAHPC Manual of Palliative Care 3rd Edition (Sept 2013)
The International Association For Hospice and Palliative Care (IAHPC) publishes this clinical manual for health care professionals in palliative care.
- Palliative Care Services in Victoria (Feb 2012)
Published by Palliative Care Victoria, this five page document provides a range of interesting snapshot of palliative care and palliative care in Victoria.
- Palliative Care Australia Annual Review 2012
Palliative Care Australia is the peak national organisation representing the interests of all those who share the ideal of quality care at the end of life; this document provides an excellent overview of current palliative care.
Disability residential services
- Disability residential services palliative care guide: end of life care for residents of disability residential services (Apr 2010) Department of Human Services
This guide describes the important role of palliative care in the provision of end-of-life care for residents of disability residential services; it steps you through the key areas for support and identifies useful documents, training and resources and where to find them.
End of life care
- End of Life Care and Care Pathways in Victoria: Report & Recommendations (May 2011) Centre for Palliative Care, St Vincent’s and Collaborative Centre of the University of Melbourne
This project was established to develop an integrated approach for health care service providers interested in the use of end of life care pathways in Victoria, Australia.
GP palliative care information
- Doctor’s bag: palliative care information (2011) Ballarat and District Division of General Practice Inc.
A doctor’s resource for symptom control for symptoms commonly experienced in palliative care; updates of new drug lists are available at the above link.
- Palliative care services in Australia (Nov 2012) Australian Institute of Health and Welfare (AIHW)
This report provides a review of existing national data and presents results of analysis undertaken by the AIHW. The quality and breadth of data items within the various data sources are considered, along with the usefulness of the data in meeting the information needs of stakeholders.
- Standards for providing quality palliative care for all Australians (2005) Palliative Care Australia
The standards need to be read in conjunction with A Guide to Palliative Care Service Development: A population based approach and the Service Provision in Australia: A Planning Guide. In these three documents, PCA provides the platform which shaped the review of the Standards and ensures consistent advice and direction to the entire health care sector.
- Strengthening assessment and care planning: a guide for HACC assessment services in Victoria (Sept 2011) Department of Health
This guide assists assessors with a person-centred, active service model of care; it describes the skills, techniques and knowledge base required to deliver living at home assessments for people receiving Home and Community Care services. See also Induction resource of HACC assessment services.
- Strengthening assessment and care planning: workbook (2011)
Department of Health
This workbook is a companion document to Strengthening assessment and care planning: A guide for HACC assessment services in Victoria (the guide). It provides continuous improvement and practical learning activities to assist HACC assessment services managers, intake workers and assessors to implement the guide.
- Victoria Public Sector Residential Aged Care – List of Facilities April 2013 (MS Excel spreadsheet) Victorian Government Health Information
List of all high and low care residential aged care facilities and bed numbers in Victoria. Bed rates in Change and disadvantage in the Grampians region, Victoria (Mar 2011) above.
- Australian Government Directory of Services for Older People 2012–2013
A guide to Australian Government programs and services of interest to older people including health, care needs, legal rights, and finance and employment choices. Some services are especially relevant to certain sectors of the community; symbols have been used to help identify these groups.
- Living longer, living better – Aged care reform package (Apr 2012)
Department of Health and Ageing
The Aged Care Reform package will modernise Australia’s aged care system. It will deliver immediate benefits to older Australians and the broader community, while laying the foundations for longer term reform. It will strike the right balance between essential and much-needed changes and ensure the pace of change does not compromise the capacity of the current system to continue to deliver care at a time of transition.
- National ageing and aged care strategy for people from CALD backgrounds (2012) Department of Health and Ageing
This strategy informs and assists the Department of Health and Ageing (DoHA) implement the Living Longer Living Better aged care reform package; it also helps aged care services support older people from CALD backgrounds, their families and carers to continue to contribute to and engage with their communities.
- Evaluation of the consumer-directed care initiative – final report (Jan 2012) Department of Health and Ageing
This document aims to provide community aged care consumers with greater control of their lives by allowing them to make informed choices about the type of care services they access and the delivery of the services, including who will deliver the services and when they are delivered.
- Encouraging best practice in residential aged care program – final report (Nov 2011) Department of Health and Ageing
The Encouraging Best Practice in Residential Aged Care (EBPRAC) program represents the most comprehensive, coordinated, approach to implementing evidence-based practice in residential aged care (low and high level care) undertaken in Australia.
- Guidelines for a palliative approach in residential aged care (May 2006) Australian Department of Health and Ageing
This document provides evidence-based guidelines for the implementation of the palliative approach by all those caring for people with a life-limiting illness or condition in residential aged care facilities.
- Guidelines for a palliative approach in the community setting (Jun 2011) Australian Department of Health and Ageing
This document was developed as a companion document to the Guidelines for a palliative approach in residential aged care.
- Affirming life – what is a palliative approach? A guide for family and friends with loved ones in aged care
This guide provides information for family and friends to help them understand the palliative approach provided in residential aged care and encourage a partnership between family/friends and residential aged care service providers; this guide is based on the above Guidelines for a palliative approach in residential aged care (May 2006).
- Strengthening palliative care: Palliative care volunteer standards (2007) Department of Human Services
Volunteers are an essential component of the palliative care in Victoria and provide a unique avenue for clients, carers and families to be supported by their local community; the standards provide program standards and volunteer service standards for the Victorian palliative care sector. Back to Top