New grant supports vital palliative care research

HammondCare is a key partner in a palliative care research collaborative which has received new funding worth nearly $300,000 from the Cancer Institute NSW.

ImPaCCT’s mission is to improve NSW palliative care services for people with advanced cancer and other life limiting illness through ethical, scientifically rigorous, collaborative research.Improving Palliative Care through Clinical Trials (ImPaCCT) - the NSW collaborative trials group in palliative care - was successful in the Cancer Institute's 2012 Cooperative Clinical Trials Grants announced recently.

Associate Professor Meera Agar, Director of Palliative Care at HammondCare's Braeside Hospital, is chair of ImPaCCT and Associate Professor Jospehine Clayton and Dr Melanie Lovell, also of HammondCare are on the Management Advisory Committee.

HammondCare is a leading provider of hospital and community palliative care across northern and south-west Sydney. Alongside services to patients and families, research is highly valued as a highly effective way of seeking evidenced-based best practice and continued improvement.

Research vital part of clinical care

HammondCare's Chief Medical Officer, Associate Professor Andrew Cole, congratulated ImPaCCT and HammondCare's representatives, on the successful grant bid.

"Research is a vital part of clinical care as it asks critical questions about the what and how of our care for our patients," Dr Cole said.

"Our involvement in this important research collaborative is another indicator as to the value we place on clinical research at HammondCare."

HammondCare is currently involved in two significant projects with the support of ImPaCCT addressing palliative care for people with advanced dementia and pain guidelines for cancer patients.

A/Prof Meera Agar is leading research into a case conferencing model for improving quality of life for people with advanced dementia.

Dr Melanie Lovell is leading the STOP PAIN project which is in phase 2 of developing a new guideline: Cancer Pain Management in Adults: evidence-based clinical practice guidelines adapted for use in Australia.

Other health services involved in ImPaCCT are Calvary Health Care, Northern Sydney Central Coast Area Health Service,  Sacred Heart Palliative Care Service, South East Sydney and Illawarra Health Service, Sydney South West Area Health Service, Hunter New England Local Health District and Calvary Mater Newcastle.