New research to enhance the timeliness and responsiveness of care for palliative care patients has been awarded a $100,000 grant by the Avant Foundation.

The project, led by the Royal Melbourne Hospital's (RMH) Professor Jennifer Philip and Professor Brian Le, is known as the Patient Reported Needs Recording (PARTNER) study. It will pilot and evaluate the remote monitoring of patients’ symptoms reported regularly utilising smartphone and electronic devices.

Palliative care plays an increasingly important role in the care of those with chronic advanced illnesses, providing expertise to relieve symptoms, improve function, and enhance quality of life. The PARTNER study will facilitate patient involvement in symptom monitoring, prompting clinician review, and timely early intervention for community-based patients in the care of palliative care services at the RMH and Peter MacCallum Cancer Centre.

Routine symptom monitoring with appropriate responses can lead to better symptom management and improved patient experience, as well as fewer emergency and unplanned hospital admissions for people with advanced illness.

"This funding will enable us to develop and implement a new approach to symptom monitoring and timely therapeutic responses for people with advanced illness," said the RMH’s palliative care specialist, Professor Jennifer Philip. "We are excited about the potential of this project to improve the experience and outcomes for patients and their families."

Patient in bed holding another person's hand
Mobile Stroke Unit with Ambulance Victoria paramedic and the RMH Stroke team
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