Experienced, patient and creative end of life advocate
What I can assist you with:
As an end of life advocate my role is to smooth the sometimes frenetic and highly emotional stage of end of life. For family, loved ones and the person at end of life. If appropriate I help to get into place essential legal documents such as Advance Care Directive, Medical Treatment Decision Maker, Refusal of treatment cert if applicable etc. Engage in compassionate open talks about the things that are important to the person at EOL. Do they want to die at home, what do they want to be done with their body? Donate to Melbourne University, cremate or burial. Natural burial, shroud etc.
Loved ones can’t always be present, I can sit vigil with person at EOL. This can be in hospital, nursing home or at home.
Assist in setting up personal room nursing home so as to resemble home and lessen the anxiety that is so often felt.
I often liaise with health allied team on behalf of person at end of life and if required attend medical appointments. Assist with sharing my knowledge and network in working out Centrelink, ACAT, funeral options and encourage community involvement for the final memorial and funeral.
I am experienced in washing the body in a ritual or ceremonial manner, depending on person’s preferences.
Once the dialogue begins, people become less challenged and more creative. Especially when they learn how much control they have. A sense of humour, patience and non judgmental attitude are, to me, essential skills. For loved ones to be as much a part, or as little, of this as possible is my wish. You may phone me and we can talk about your concerns, your fears and your ideas. Most of my work is through referral and I do not advertise.
My family met Annie when my Dad, was diagnosed with MND. We were struggling to understand the disease, the health care services, the practical steps that had to be organised and the emotions. Annie helped us in so many ways. She gently guided us through the system and helped us make decisions that ensured he was able to die at home.
Father with MND/ Virginia Ennals
Dearest Annie I want to say a sincere thanks for all your help, advice and support for Mum and I. During such a stressful time I cannot believe how incredibly you became part of our lives. When I searched for a Death Doula I never expected to find someone so understanding who became an intimate part of such a significant time in Mum’s and my life.