PALLIATIVE CARE HIGH ON GEORGE'S AGENDA

PALLIATIVE CARE HIGH ON GEORGE'S AGENDA

1 November 2010

Nationals Member for Lismore Thomas George spoke passionately in Parliament last week on the importance of palliative care services.

In his speech to the House, Mr George asked that the efforts of palliative care throughout the State be recognised and stressed how the service offered many things.

"It affirms life and treats dying as a normal process; it neither hastens nor postpones death; it provides relief from pain and other distressing symptoms; it integrates the physical, psychological, social, emotional and spiritual aspects of care with coordinated assessment and management of each person's need; it offer a support to help the family cope during the person's illness and in their bereavement; and it also offers a support system that enables people to stay in their own home for those last crucial days, hours and minutes," he said.

Sadly, Mr George also noted how funding cutbacks made by the State Labor Government in 2009 had meant the loss of a palliative care social worker position based out of St Vincent's Hospital, Lismore.

The loss of this part-time position, which had serviced 100 patients a month, has left many people in the region stripped of the benefits palliative care offers.

"People in country and regional areas do not always have access to transport; they rely on social workers to visit them," he said.

In noting this however, Mr George paid tribute to all those involved with palliative care throughout the North Coast Area Health Service, and in particular the team of dedicated staff operating out of Lismore's St Vincent's Hospital, headed by Dr Joanne Doran, the Palliative Care Physician and Director of Palliative Care for the North Coast Area Health Service.

"On behalf of all members of the House, I say thank you to everyone associated with palliative care in this State," he said.

Lismore Contact Details:

Office: 55 Carrington Street  LISMORE
Postal: PO Box 52  LISMORE  NSW  2480
Telephone: 02 6621 3624
Facsimile: 02 6622 1403
Email: lismore@parliament.nsw.gov.au

Murwillumbah Contact Details:

Telephone: 02 6672 7577