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Ending life well. A podcast series for carers

If you are seeking to find out some practical and useful information on the challenges of caring for someone with a palliative diagnosis the Ending Life Well Podcast series is a great place to start. Currently there are 25 episodes with a variety of topics, where you can listen to interviews with experts in their fields. Each is only 15-25 minutes long and is backed up by written material also available on our website.  

Ending life well. A podcast series for carers

This series is for New Zealand family carers who are faced with caring for a loved one who is dying.

Developed by the specialist palliative team at Otago Community Hospice and supported by Hospice New Zealand, the series provides reliable palliative advice and information for carers who may find themselves out of their depth caring for someone nearing end of life.

The series was inspired by the Kowhai Programme - a well-established carers education programme created in response to research done in collaboration with the University of Otago in 2010. 

Available to listen to on Spotify, iHeart Radio, Google Podcasts & Apple Podcasts or by clicking the links below:


Ep 1: Carers - How to Keep Yourself Well
When looking after a loved one, looking after yourself is a priority too.

EP 2: Small and Tasty - Tempting Someone to Eat
Meals can become difficult at end of life – learn about the signs of when to encourage someone to eat, knowing when to let them be, and meeting the food desires of your patient.

Ep 3: Pills and Potions - Managing the Meds
The meds on this journey can be confusing and overwhelming – we provide tips on managing new, different and changing medications.

Ep 4 Grief and Loss
Grief is different for everybody. There are no clear guidelines, but we have some advice for adapting to the grief you are feeling.

Ep 5: Carer and Patient Fatigue
This is a very tiring journey – learn about why you as a carer are feeling so tired, and how you can manage your and your patient’s fatigue.

Ep 6: Rest, Relax, Sleep
You need to ensure that you rest, relax and sleep – we provide some ideas about how to fit this into your carer’s schedule, without letting your patient down.

Ep 7: What to Expect at End of Life
What does dying look like? And what do I need to do at the time of death? 

Ep 8: Advance Care Planning
Every decision you make in advance will help make everything easier later. This episode is a must listen for carer’s and family members.

Ep 9: What does Grief look like?
Grief has so many different forms of expression; it’s not always about crying. Learn to recognise how your and others grief is conveyed.

Ep 10: Finding Meaning - The Importance of Self
These days of caring for someone you love who is dying will be hard. But it is important to ensure you find some meaning in your day-to-day actions.

Ep 11: Breathlessness
Often patients will experience breathlessness; we give you tips and techniques for dealing with breathlessness, so you are prepared.

Ep 12: Different forms of Grief and some helpful tools
You world has turned topsy turvy. This episode provides are some key actions to help you stay the right way up.

Ep 13: Myths around Morphine and other Meds
There are plenty of myths around about Hospice and use of Morphine – but this episode explodes those myths, and details how meds work at the end of life.

Ep 14: Legal Matters
What you need to know about Wills and Enduring Powers of Attorney

Ep 15: Funeral Planning
Making some choices in advance is crucial, and can help your patient as well. Don’t leave this planning to the last minute, we’ve got lots of tips on how a funeral can be run.

Ep 16: Guided Relaxation Technique
This six minute recording can help with feelings of anxiety or a busy mind. It can be listened to whenever is most convenient for you, however a good time is just before bed, or before something you expect to be challenging.

Ep 17: Guided Relaxation & Visualisation 
This relaxation and visualisation recording can help with feelings of anxiety or a busy mind. It is also particularly useful for those dealing with COPD.

Ep 18: Relationships and Intimacy at the End of Life
The power of touch, connection and intimacy during this journey can be significant to both carer and patient. We shares some ideas to help you sustain your relationship.

Ep 19: Children and Grief
We often want to protect children from grief, but this is not always possible, or desirable. Children need to be supported to process their grief in an age appropriate way. We share some suggestions for how to best meet the needs of your child.

Ep 20: Supporting Teenagers and Young Adults Going Through Grief
Teenagers and young adults might already find life complicated, so adding in loss and grief can be especially challenging. Maintaining relationships is a key starting point to supporting them through this time.

Ep 21: Moving Into Aged Care - Practical Tips
Having to transition into aged care is a challenge many of us will face. We explore very practical tips and ideas to make this transition easier.

Ep 22: Moving Into Aged Care - The Emotional Impact
When someone we care for moves into aged care it can have an impact on us as well as the person moving in. This episode identifies some of the ways this can surface, and tips for dealing with the challenges ahead.

Ep 23: Can We Talk? Opening Up Conversations About Dying
We often find when someone is dying they or their family struggle to talk about it. People may be reluctant to start a conversation or they may want to talk but just don't know how.

Ep 24: Helping Someone Move Safely
When we are caring for another person we often need to help them move around. This episode offers some advice on some of the things you can do to protect yourself while helping them to move between furniture, or in a bed, safely.

Ep 25: Life Stories and Other Memory Gifts
Writing a biography is one way of celebrating a life that can bring pleasure to both the person telling their story and to those who treasure the record they have to remember them by. This episode explains why this can mean so much and  offers tips on how to go about recording someone's story.
There are also suggestions that might appeal for creating memory bears, cushions, or other memory gifts. Check out our support activities as we often have groups making legacy pieces.



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