National survey to highlight challenges and opportunities in delivering palliative care

Palliative Care Australia

A landmark survey has been launched at the start of National Palliative Care Week that seeks to identify the challenges, barriers, and successes in delivering or accessing palliative care in a range of health settings.

“It’s important that we hear from a wide cross section of health professionals and volunteers – those who are supporting or want to see better support for people with a life limiting illness and their loved ones,” says Camilla Rowland, Chief Executive Officer, Palliative Care Australia (PCA).

“Questions are targeted at those working in the specialist palliative care, aged care, primary health, and allied health sectors. Clinicians, service and practise managers, and volunteers are all encouraged to take part.

“Given the key role GPs can play when it comes to palliative care, we are especially keen for them to do this short survey so that primary health can grow and strengthen the cradle to grave service they provide to local communities.”

Completing the online survey only takes 10 minutes, and is an important opportunity to empower PCA’s advocacy, policy development, and awareness raising on behalf of patients and their loved ones, at a national and local level.

“We know that the doctors, nurses, allied health professionals, managers, and volunteers we are asking to complete this survey are very busy, but I really hope they see this as an opportunity to share what they know so that PCA and our members can advocate on their behalf to health systems at every level.

“We haven’t undertaken a survey like this in a long time, so I hope people see this as a chance to express themselves – it’s empowering and allows us to take a real-world perspective into our work with government.”

Survey questions relate to:

  • Workforce pressures
  • Demand for palliative care services
  • The National Palliative Care Standards
  • After-hours care
  • Wellbeing at work
  • Voluntary assisted dying
  • Palliative care in primary care and aged care
  • And more

“Over three hundred people are dying across Australia every day, around 53% of these people would benefit from palliative care and the quality of life it delivers,” Ms Rowland says.

“As our population gets older and lives with an increasing burden of chronic illness, demand for palliative care is growing. We need to be ready to meet that demand otherwise the care and comfort we want for our parents, siblings, children, and ourselves just won’t be there.

“This survey is a critical step in making sure palliative care is at the heart of ongoing and future health reforms.”

The ‘Survey of the National Palliative Care Workforce Across Health and Aged Care Settings’ takes about 10 minutes to complete and is for everyone who works or volunteers in any service that provides palliative care in Australia.

It is important for you to know that the information you provide in this survey is anonymous.

Your identity and the place you work is not captured, recorded, or stored in anyway. It’s important to us that you feel free to express yourself in the interests of those you care for and those you work with.

PCA and our members are grateful for your interest and the insights you share, it is information that will help us shape a broad, generalised picture of the challenges and opportunities of current and future care.

You can access and complete the survey HERE.

National Palliative Care Week runs 19 – 25 May 2024.

/Public Release.