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10th October 2019

Palliative Care WA congratulates the McGowan Government for releasing another significant injection of funds into the improved delivery of palliative care in Western Australia.

We recognise this is a significant addition to the $41 million announced in the 2019/20 budget and applaud the Government for acting on recommendations from the Joint Select Committee on End of Life Choices, namely 10 inpatient palliative care beds in the northern metropolitan suburbs; increased community based services across both metropolitan and regional WA; and improved governance of rural and regional palliative care services.

However, Palliative Care WA believes that there is still much work to be done to improve understanding of, and access to, palliative care services for all Western Australians.

Palliative Care WA Chief Executive Officer Lana Glogowski said “Given our significant connection with both the palliative care sector and the broader community across the State, we are acutely aware that more consideration is required to address the palliative care needs of specific groups, such as those experiencing cognitive decline i.e. Alzheimer’s, those with mental health issues, people with disabilities and those from Aboriginal as well as culturally diverse communities.”

“We also need to continue our engagement with the aged care sector working to improve palliative care delivery in that setting. Consideration needs to also be given to chronic disease areas and younger people in need of access to palliative care.”

There is also a need to improve Western Australians’ understanding of death and dying (death literacy).  Palliative Care WA will continue to focus on encouraging all Western Australians to engage in Advance Care Planning and have vitally important and empowering conversations with their loved ones about what matters to them for their last stage of life.

Our consumer awareness campaign You Only Die Once and the delivery of our highly successful Advance Care Planning workshops are just the start, but there is much more that needs to be done.