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The views and opinions expressed in our blog series are those of the authors and are not necessarily supported by CareSearch, Flinders University and/or the Australian Government Department of Health.
A significant feature of the 2019-20 Federal Budget for healthcare professionals, and patients and their carers was that it foreshadowed a shift in funding arrangements for chronic disease management within primary care for people aged over 70. Katharine Silk, Innovation and Integration Manager at Australian Healthcare & Hospitals Association (AHHA) discusses how the federal budget may impact primary care nurses.
A full time GP can expect to see 5-6 deaths per year. With increase in our ageing population, and people becoming more frail as they accumulate more health problems, the rate of deaths is set to double. Professor Geoffrey Mitchell of the University of Queensland writes how GPs can better support patients and their carers and families by updating their knowledge through best available palliative care evidence and CareSearch.
Most Australians have an expectation that their GP will be able to provide them with the care they need when they are unwell, or at least make sure that they are linked in with the right services. While most GPs feel they have a role to play in caring for patients at the end-of-life, many do not feel confident in doing so.
Recognised barriers to providing palliative care include patient complexity, inadequate training, inadequate access to resources and poor communication from specialists or treating teams.
Palliative care and advance care planning is, and should be, part of the normal scope of practice of all primary care providers. To support this ELDAC has developed the primary care toolkit with relevant information and resources.