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Palliative Care Plan Needed

Media Release - Thursday, 18 August 2016, Rosalie Woodruff MP


Rosalie Woodruff MP | Greens Health spokesperson

During Question Time today, Health Minister, Michael Ferguson, was unable to outline his plan to address the desperate palliative care funding gap in Tasmania.

Minister Ferguson was unable to say how he is preparing to care for the 70% of Tasmanians who want to die at home. All he could say was that he was "advocating" for Tasmania, with the Federal Health Minister.

Funding for Hospice@home, who support people to die in their own home, ends completely in 10 months.

It will leave 300 to 400 Tasmanians unsupported, many of whom will end their days in a public hospital, not their home.

On top of the impending cuts to Hospice@home, the Federal funds for Palliative Care Tasmania ran out last June.

Palliative Care Tasmania provides education for people preparing for the death of a loved one, and training services for the aged-care sector. Their northern office has already closed, and by the end of September, the whole service will have to shut its doors.

Palliative care and death literacy allow people to die in the place of their choosing, with their wishes heard and an understanding of the process. These services also save a large amount of money in our hospitals and acute care sector.

Minister Ferguson needs to outline what he will do to keep these vital services available to support dying Tasmanians.