Greater Choice for At Home Palliative Care

This measure boosts funding for palliative care coordination through Primary Health Networks (PHNs). It builds on existing infrastructure and current Australian Government investment in primary health care, and better coordinates and integrates primary, secondary, tertiary and community health services.

Page last updated: 09 May 2017

PDF version: Greater Choice for At Home Palliative Care (PDF 127 KB)

Why is this important?

The Government has designed this initiative to address a clearly identified need for people requiring palliative or end-of-life care, and their families and carers.

Australia has one of the lowest rates in the world of people dying outside of hospital or in residential aged care.

Provided that symptoms can be adequately controlled, up to 90 per cent of people at the end of life prefer to be cared for and to die comfortably at home. Cost-effective care will support patient preferences at the end of life.

Chronic diseases are the leading cause of illness, disability and death in Australia, accounting for 90 per cent of all deaths in 2011, with 5.3 million Australians living with two or more chronic conditions.

This funding boost for home-based palliative care will:
  • improve access to safe, quality palliative care at home and support end-of-life care systems and services in primary health care and community care;
  • enable the right care, at the right time and in the right place to reduce unnecessary hospitalisations;
  • generate and use data to ensure continuous improvement of services across sectors; and
  • utilise available technologies to provide flexible and responsive care, including care after usual business hours.

Who will benefit?

This measure will benefit individuals who have a known life limiting condition, and will improve choice, and quality of care and support.

It will affect primary health care providers by making referral processes easier.

It will reduce the burden on families and carers, and improve the support available to them by better coordinating and integrating services.

How much will this cost?

This measure will cost $8.3 million from 2017–18 to 2019–20.

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