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Commitment to improve palliative care welcomed

Palliative Care Victoria welcomes today’s commitment by the Victorian Health Minister to improve access to palliative care and end of life care choices and calls on the Victorian Government to provide substantial increases in funding for palliative care in the 2016 Budget.

Opening the largest Australian palliative care conference in Melbourne today, Hon. Jill Hennessy committed to consult widely in developing a new Victorian End of Life Care Framework so that people can genuinely make choices about the care they receive and more people can receive care at home. She also acknowledged the need to improve the effectiveness of advance care planning and to extend this to future health conditions.

“The Minister’s commitment is very welcome and confirms the need for significant innovation and investment to support the palliative care and end of life care needs and choices of Victorians. This high priority must be supported by substantial new funding in the 2016 Budget.  For people who are dying and their families, time is of the essence,” said Mr. Michael Bramwell, Chair of Palliative Care Victoria.

Palliative Care Victoria’s 2016 Budget Call to Action outlines 6 key recommendations that require at least $16.45 million a year in new funding.

“Increased Government investment in palliative care and end of life care is a win-win strategy because it improves significantly the experience of patients and their families. At the same time it makes far better use of scarce health resources by freeing up hospital beds, reducing pressure on Emergency Departments and lowering costs.

“Recent reports by the Grattan Institute, the Office of the Victorian Auditor General, and the Travis review also confirm this,” Mr. Bramwell said.

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