Expand palliative care services

The DLP has a long standing commitment to supporting the most vulnerable in our community. In light of this year’s Victorian State Election, the DLP’s pledge to expand palliative care services is a core component of this commitment.

Presently in Victoria there are some outstanding palliative care services which seek to alleviate the pain and suffering of individuals who are in the last stages of their life. However, palliative care provision in Victoria is currently between 16% and 40% less than required to meet current need.

elderly handsThe DLP believes that all Victorians should have access to such services, without the fear of being a burden, the fear of being alone, or the fear of unbearable pain.

These fears, amongst a complexity of other factors, contribute to coercion to sign ‘Advanced Care Plans’ where ‘early exit’ is favoured.  If euthanasia laws are ever enacted in Victoria, coercion to euthanasia is also a very real danger, based on these fears.

The DLP believes that the only real alternative to euthanasia and assisted suicide lies in providing loving, competent and compassionate care to people with severe disabilities and/or to people who are dying.

The DLP believes that legislation of euthanasia and assisted suicide is completely unnecessary, in light of advances within medicine and alternative medicine for effective pain relief, and the development of modern methods of palliative care.

The DLP believes in offering people choices regarding end of life care, including an emphasis on identifying and treating depression.  To offer such choices, the DLP will promote:

  • greater acknowledgement of, and support for, unpaid carers (usually family members) in end of life care;
  • palliative care as a core business component in aged care services;
  • palliative care services appropriate for younger people;
  • the early identification and treatment of depression for people who are ill; and
  • widespread public access to education around the implications of advanced care directives, and the promotion of positive images of palliative care.

What we will do:

If the DLP is successful in winning a seat within the Victorian Parliament, we will:

  • in our maiden speech, promote a positive image of palliative care, including an acknowledgement of the need to expand access to services;
  • pursue the expansion of palliative care services through negotiations with the Health and Community Services portfolios;
  • speak out against advanced care directives which promote the early termination of life;
  • negotiate with the government of the day, to ensure that the expansion of palliative care, and the promotion of positive images of palliative care, receives full support.

The DLP will never support legislation which promotes euthanasia or assisted suicide.  If such legislation is introduced in Victoria, the DLP will lead a movement against this which will involve active negotiations within government as well as a broad community campaign.

 

 

 

 

Authorised by Michael Murphy, 14 Coventry Place, South Melbourne