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Cultural Implications of End-of-Life Care on the wellbeing of Samoan families

36 months
Approved budget:
Ms Elizabeth Fanueli
Dr Fuafiva Fa'alau
Associate Professor Janine Wiles
Health issue:
Other (generic health or health services)
Proposal type:
Pacific Health PhD Scholarship
Lay summary
The End-of-Life Choice Act 2019 is an act in New Zealand that seeks to give people with a terminal illness the option of assisted dying. This act contradicts with Pacific and Samoan cultural and spiritual beliefs about life and its sanctity, creating challenges for most families. The New Zealand Palliative Care Strategy indicated that palliative care effectively improves the quality of life for people who are dying. Yet, Pacific peoples are less likely to access palliative and hospice care services though they continue to experience poor health outcomes and lower life expectancies. This exploratory study aims to provide a cultural lens considering end of life care from the Samoan cultural context in the hope of opening up the narrative to ensure better care and understanding of Pacific and Samoan families as they care for dying loved ones including during the time of the COVID-19 national lockdowns.