I Am Living

Palliative care is a holistic approach. It focuses on the whole person, not just the medical condition and its physical symptoms, but also on mental health, general wellness, spirituality, human connection and emotions. The care incorporates physical, psychological, spiritual, social, and cultural aspects to ensure a life-giving experience for people facing a life-limiting illness, those important to them and caregivers.

  • Physical needsRefers to physical symptoms (for example pain, weakness, nausea, fatigue, vomiting) and how they are managed. It also describes how information is delivered to people living with a life-limiting illness (for example diagnosis, prognosis, treatment), identifies people’s physical strengths and their capacity to participate in their care and treatment.
  • Cultural needs – Considers a person’s cultural and personal issues in planning their care.
  • Psychological and cognitive needsConsiders a person’s journey from diagnosis and prognosis as they navigate the mental and emotional impact of their lived experience (for example grief, mental wellbeing), as well as providing information and referral about a variety of typical concerns (for example legal, ethical, financial).
  • Social needsConsiders the person’s needs and access to others for social connection, accompaniment, and support, as well as preferences regarding language and disclosure of information.
  • Spiritual needsRelates to the person’s spiritual concerns, including hope, uncertainty, meaning, purpose, loss and transition, as well as belief systems, practices, sense of belonging and community of faith, legacy wishes and funeral preparation.