Dialog Box

PCV delivers cooling mattresses to Rumbalara and ACES


For the past 18 months, Palliative Care Victoria (PCV) has undertaken a project to develop a Model of Care to increase access to Culturally Safe and appropriate palliative care and end-of-life care in Residential Aged Care for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people. The project is part of the Comprehensive Palliative Care in Aged Care Measure.

The project has been led by a Steering Group of Aboriginal Community members with experience in palliative care and aged care. The Steering Group identified factors that could contribute to greater cultural support within aged care facilities, especially during the palliative and end-of-life stages.

Cooling mattresses were identified as the way to enable cultural practices to be observed within residential aged care facilities. The mattresses allow the deceased person to remain in place for up to 5 days, allowing time for family and community to attend, and for cultural and religious observances to take place.

As part of the project, PCV has provided both Rumbalara Elders Facility (Shepparton), and the Aboriginal Community Elders Service ACES (Brunswick East) with a cooling mattress and relevant training for the staff. These services are the only two Aboriginal-specific aged care facilities in Victoria.

Rumbalara staff discuss the cooling mattress with PCV team member

PCV hopes that the cooling mattresses will benefit the facilities and both services have agreed to share stories of use, empowering other facilities hoping to improve the Cultural Safety of their residents and communities.

ACES team with the new cooling mattress

Article by:
Simon Hore-Thorburn
Aged Care Project, Palliative Care Victoria

June 2024

03 July 2024
Category: News