Healthcare assistants expand palliative care knowledge at NZTC PD evenings

Healthcare assistants expand palliative care knowledge at NZTC PD evenings

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Christchurch attendees

Healthcare workers from a range of specialist areas came together to enhance their knowledge of palliative care at free professional development evenings hosted by New Zealand Tertiary College (NZTC).

Healthcare assistants working at rest homes, hospitals, end-of-life care, residential, and community care facilities attended the events held at the college’s campuses in Auckland on Tuesday 6 March and Christchurch on Tuesday 13 March – open to anyone, including their colleagues, interested in learning more about the topic.

“Lifelong learning is vital for every professional and we are very proud to support healthcare assistants in upskilling their knowledge and attaining relevant, community responsive programs of study. I especially love the opportunity that NZTC has to increase our reach of support by offering free professional development evenings that not only support our students but also the wider care profession – clients, clients’ families and healthcare team members,” said Chief Executive Selena Fox.

In Auckland guest speaker Helen Butler, Education Team Leader at Mercy Hospice Auckland, addressed 28 attendees who travelled from all over the Auckland region to broaden their understanding of the topic, with Raewyn Jenkins, Clinical Nurse Educator at Nurse Maude Hospice Palliative Care Service, enlightening 26 attendees in Christchurch from a range of facilities in and around the city.

Guest speakers gave an overview of palliative care and delved into specifics including death trajectories, practical strategies for managing symptoms, and how to have difficult conversations while keeping spiritual and cultural considerations in mind.

NZTC Health and Wellbeing Level 3 student Maria Robiso from Auckland said the college’s professional development evenings have equipped her with knowledge that she has been able to incorporate into her work routine.

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Helen Butler (centre) with NZTC lecturers

Healthcare Assistant Tiana Meke, who attended the Auckland event, spoke along similar lines. She commented, “The palliative care professional development event was very helpful – I’ve learnt so much and will be taking it to help with my employment and future.”

Christchurch-based NZTC Health and Wellbeing Level 3 student Claire Mooiman said, “It was very informative and interesting, I learned a lot! Raewyn was a great presenter and taught at a wonderful pace.”

The Christchurch evening was just as practically focused as the Auckland session, with Healthcare Assistant Naomi Painter remarking on the value of the information received at the event in her everyday work.

“I found the evening very helpful and informative. I will be able to use this new knowledge I’ve gained from the session with the residents at my work,” she said.