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Review aims to optimise palliative care services

Contributor:
Fuseworks Media
Fuseworks Media

Health Minister Jonathan Coleman says a review into palliative care services aims to further enhance the care accessed by thousands of New Zealanders and their families each year.

"Palliative care is a priority for the Government and we are keen to ensure high quality and well-coordinated care is available to all who need it," says Dr Coleman.

"This review is not about changing the fundamental arrangements of palliative care, but building on progress already made and optimising services to meet future needs.

"This review is timely, as it follows the Government’s $76.1 million investment into hospice community palliative care services in Budget 2015.

"The funding boost will help expand community palliative care services so they can better support terminally ill people at home and in aged-care facilities. It will also go towards the recruitment of up to 60 new nurse specialists, palliative care educators and other roles at hospices."

New Zealanders are living longer, but people are also experiencing more complex health conditions in their final years.

Around 17,000 adults and their families will access palliative care services this year, and this figure is expected to increase as our population grows.

The review will be undertaken by the Ministry of Health with support from a Palliative Care Advisory Panel. It will focus on improving services over the next three to five years, while considering the likely demand for those services over the next 10 to 20 years.

It will cover primary and specialist services, and all care settings, including the home, hospital, hospice and aged residential care facilities.

Further information about the Review of Adult Palliative Care Services is available on the Ministry of Health website www.health.govt.nz. The final report is expected by September 2016.

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