$743 million to enhance end-of-life care in NSW
NSW residents will have access to the highest quality care and pain management services at the end of their life, with palliative care and specialist health services to receive a record $743 million funding boost over the next five years.
Premier Dominic Perrottet said the 2022-23 funding boost is on top of the $300 million the NSW Government invests each year in palliative care.
“We’re committed to ensuring NSW has the best palliative care services and support in Australia, if not the world,” Mr Perrottet said.
“This is about providing the greatest possible comfort and dignity to people who are at the end of their life, whether that’s in hospital, at home or in the wider community, right across the state.”
Treasurer Matt Kean said the funding will deliver an additional 600 health staff across NSW to support those in their final stage of life once the program is fully rolled out.
“The funding boost will allow us to employ an extra 600 nurses, allied health professionals, doctors and support staff to care for people at their most vulnerable time, who will be of great comfort to patients and families alike,” Mr Kean said.
“This funding will allow more people to live at home and close to loved ones when they need them most. It will improve access to new treatments, world-leading pain management services and medications, and community-based services to reduce unnecessary stays in hospitals.”
Health Minister Brad Hazzard said the investment will also increase the number of short-term, high-care beds in rural, regional and metropolitan hospitals.
“We will be providing more palliative care beds for people requiring short-term hospital stays right across the state,” Mr Hazzard said.
“We will also build new dedicated palliative care units in two of our major hospitals, Westmead and Nepean, which will dramatically improve services for these local communities in Western Sydney.”
Minister for Regional Health Bronnie Taylor said the NSW Government is placing a strong focus on caring for people in regional communities.
“As a former palliative care nurse, I know how significant this package will be for patients and their loved ones,” Mrs Taylor said.
“Everyone has the right to die with dignity, and this package will provide better access to palliative care no matter where you live.”
The package includes $650 million over five years to:
- employ an extra 600 nurses, allied health professionals, doctors, and support staff
- boost hospital capacity and implement best-practice models for supportive and palliative care
- improve access to pain management services for patients with life-limiting illness, to help patients and their family and carers
- improve services for people with late stage chronic and degenerative conditions, and cancer
- further strengthen outpatient and community health services
- support consumer choice and excellence in end-of-life and palliative care
- strengthen virtual care, transport and equipment programs
- improve partnership with non-Government organisations, primary care and aged care services.
A further $93 million will be used for capital investment, to redevelop and refurbish NSW Health facilities, including new dedicated palliative care units at Westmead Hospital and Nepean Hospital.