Every person has different needs. The level and complexity of problems faced by a person with a life limiting illness, and the strengths and limitations of that person, their carers, family and friends, determines the sort of care and support offered by service providers.
Palliative care can be provided by a number of different health professionals, who often work together in teams:
- specialist palliative care doctors and nurses
- general practitioners
- other specialists: oncologists, cardiologists, neurologists, respiratory physicians etc
- allied health professionals: pharmacists, occupational therapists, physiotherapists, speech pathologists, dieticians etc
- social workers
- grief and bereavement counsellors
- pastoral care workers
The care and support offered by their usual primary health care team (GP, aged care service, other specialists etc) will be sufficient for many people at the end of life. The person’s GP, for example, is often a key palliative care provider.
As a first step, it is often helpful to talk to your usual doctor or care team about palliative care.
A small number of people experience severe or complex problems as their illness advances. These people can be referred to a specialist palliative care service, where a team of specialists will work together to meet their needs.
Find a Palliative Care Service in Western Australia
You can also follow this link to Palliative Care Australia’s National Palliative Care Service Directory and type in your postcode to locate a specialist palliative care service near you.