Palliative Care Australia (PCA) welcomes the government’s focus on systemic reform but emphasises the need for more investment in palliative care training and specialist services.
While the budget provides a strong foundation for ongoing reform, there is still a critical need for palliative care training in primary health and aged care, especially for registered nurses in aged care.
The rising demand for palliative care and the recommendations of the Royal Commission into Aged Care Quality and Safety make it essential to integrate palliative care into the ongoing reform agenda, especially with 7 in 10 Australians preferring to die at home and the number of people needing palliative care rising by 50% in the next decade.
This highlights the need for more GPs, nurses and allied health professionals to receive appropriate training, particularly in aged care. Additionally, PCA urges the government to address the strain on specialist palliative care services, which have seen a 30% increase in demand due to delayed diagnoses during the pandemic.
PCA emphasises the importance of partnerships between primary health and specialist palliative care services to ensure better access to quality palliative care for all Australians.
PCA’s pre-Budget Submission and the advice of the palliative care sector make clear that there is a need to do more: