By Catholic Health Australia" />


Wordpress (2)
  • Marie-Louise Nankivell 3 years

    John Watkins needs to understand that terminally ill people are not necessarily looking to extend their lives – and palliative care is certainly not about that; it is about caring for the patient while they are on their end of life journey.

  • Beth Gibson 3 years

    One of the aspects of this whole debate round end of life/palliative care/ voluntary assisted dying that we rarely hear about is the person’s right to refuse or stop treatment, at any time. A couple of years ago, my father died at 91. He was still living at home with my Mum, but getting frailer and more sick of what he could no longer do – he basically was ready to die and said so, often. He ended up in hospital, coughing blood. When arriving at the ED, medical staff immediately started wanting to hook up intravenous antibiotics. My Mum told them not to – that Dad was old and ready to die if that was the outcome of his health issue, whatever it was. She was challenged on this, but stood firm and had to do so several times before Dad died about a week later, having had good palliative care from the in-hospital team and support from the family GP. We can basically keep people alive for ages, and Dad could have lived and been moved to a nursing home. But for what purpose? I am proud of my Mum’s strength to do what was best for Dad and argue back to doctors who found it difficult not to do anything. It did not involve a doctor’s intervention, but it did require medical staff to let my Mum decide what Dad would have wanted. I think we need to remember that we don’t have to accept all the medical interventions that might be offered.