Tasmanians to get Better Access to Palliative Care

More Tasmanians will be able to access end of life care in their own home under a first of its kind initiative launched by the Assistant Minister for Health, Senator Fiona Nash.

Page last updated: 31 March 2014

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31 March 2014

More Tasmanians will be able to access end of life care in their own home under a first of its kind initiative launched today by the Assistant Minister for Health, Senator Fiona Nash.

The new Hospice @ Home packages, launched under the Better Access to Palliative Care (BAPC) Programme, offer more personal control and choice of treatment for people with life-limiting illness and who are nearing the end of their lives. The packages will also improve access to palliative care services for people in rural and remote areas.

“The Hospice @ Home Programme will assist people with life-limiting illnesses to be cared for and die in their own home if that is their wish,” Minister Nash said. “It will help to ensure that patients, their families and carers have more choice during the last months of a person’s life.”

“It’s about helping people to say ‘goodbye’ and supporting not only patients – but also their families and carers.”

As part of the BAPC Programme, Australian Government funding from the Tasmanian Health Assistance Package (THAP) of up to $35.2 million over three years (2013-14 to 2015-16) is being provided to The District Nurses to deliver 2,000 community-based packages of palliative care through Hospice @ Home. The programme is the first of its type to deliver comprehensive round the clock home-based palliative care across an entire state.

Alongside this funding, the Tasmanian Association for Hospice and Palliative Care will receive up to $2.67 million in Australian Government funding to provide vital infrastructure services to deliver care and support services to Tasmanians living with life-limiting illness.

In addition, Tasmania’s Department of Health and Human Services will receive $11 million in Commonwealth funding to support and enhance the existing specialist palliative care teams across Tasmania.

Packages include a mix of face-to-face visits and telephone advice/support, accessible 24/7. State-wide consistency will be a feature of both the model and standards of care, while retaining local flexibility.

Hospice @ Home has been successfully delivering trial packages under a pilot period since mid-December across all regions of Tasmania.

To date, more than 99 clients have received or are currently receiving packages of care through the Hospice @ Home service trial across Tasmania. The majority of packages are in the South (58), followed by the North West (24) and the North (17).

Minister's media contact: Carolyn Martin, 02 6277 7440 / 0417 966 328.

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