Supporting Australians To Die Well

New Approaches To Palliative Care

A Shorten Labor Government will help support Australians to exercise greater choice and control over how and where they live their final days by investing in new models of palliative care.

Right now, many Australians are not able to choose where and how they are cared for before they die.

According to the Grattan Institute, up to 70 per cent of Australians want to die at home, but only 14 per cent do so.

More than half of Australians die in hospitals and around a third die in nursing homes. Unfortunately, the rate of hospitalisation is increasing.

Labor is committed to improving palliative care in all settings, and to helping all Australians be as comfortable as possible at the end of their life.

That is why a Shorten Labor Government will invest $35 million over four years to roll out new models of palliative care.

Labor new approach to palliative care will include:

  • $21.7 million for new Palliative Care at Home packages. Under these packages, five Primary Health Networks (PHNs) will be funded to commission the services that Australians need to stay at home at the end of their lives.
  • $9 million over four years to roll out the Proactive Palliative Care model. Labor’s Proactive Palliative Care package will fund palliative specialists to partner with residential aged care facilities to promote palliative and end-of-life care, and lead case conferencing where appropriate.
  • Working with the states and territories, through the Council of Australian Governments, to expand the use of consistent advanced care directives across Australia.
  • $2.3 million over three years to allow Palliative Care Tasmania to continue its important work.
  • $1 million over three years to fund Palliative Care Australia to improve paediatric palliative care support, including to:
    • Develop new resources for families, such as on talking to terminally ill children and their siblings about death.
    • Create an online community for the families of terminally ill children, so that parents and carers are less isolated.
    • Build evidence on paediatric palliative care needs across Australia, to address current gaps and plan services and supports for the future.

Labor is committed to ensuring that all Australians is comfortable and able to live their final days in the circumstances of their choice.

More information on this policy is available here.