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Palliative Care Australia

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The National Standards

The first edition of the National Palliative Care Standards was developed by Palliative Care Australia (PCA, then the Australian Association for Hospice and Palliative Care) in 1994 in collaboration with the palliative care community. The original National Palliative Care Standards represented a set of philosophical standards, reflecting the need at the time to clearly articulate and promote a vision for compassionate and appropriate end-of-life care. The National Palliative Care Standards are to be revisited to ensure that they keep pace with the development of palliative care services across Australia and with other health service development work that has occurred.

The National Palliative Care Standards inform the National Standards Assessments Program (NSAP), which supports palliative care services in Australia to deliver safe and high quality palliative care for all Australians.

The National Standards

The first edition of the National Palliative Care Standards was developed by the Australian Association for Hospice and Palliative Care, now known as Palliative Care Australia (PCA), in 1994.

The initial National Palliative Care Standards were produced to represent a set of values and ethics to ensure that patients received the appropriate end-of-life care. The standards are required to be revisited in order to be up-to-date with the development of palliative care and other health services across Australia.

The National Palliative Care Standards inform the National Standards Assessments Program (NSAP), which supports high-quality palliative care services for all Australians.

Update to the National Palliative Care Standards

The fourth edition of the National Palliative Care Standards, published in 2005, came under review in 2014, with several palliative care, aged care and health sectors taking part in the consultation process.

In 2015, PCA began working with the PCA-appointed Standards Review Group in developing a fifth edition of the National Palliative Care Standards. After receiving extensive feedback in the previous revision, the PCA has opted to take a new approach that will better support the services participating in NSAP.

PCA has the goal of mapping the fifth edition of the National Palliative Care Standards better than its predecessor, in order to ensure that the impact on services participating in NSAP is minimal. The newest edition will also be mapped to other accreditation standards, including the National Safety Standards and the Quality Health Service Standards.

The fifth edition of the National Palliative Care Standards will undergo two phases of consultation. The initial consultation will consist of a small, targeted group, followed by a wider consultation. The release of the revised National Palliative Care Standards is dependent upon the completion of the consultations. PCA aims to have the consultation process completed by mid 2017.

Following the release of the fifth edition, resources required by services will be updated in time for NSAP participation.

PCA will keep the public informed on any new information throughout the year.

National Standards Assessment Program (NSAP)

For further information about NSAP, click here.

Key Reference Documents

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