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<b>LEGISLATIVE ASSEMBLY</b> - Closed ePetition Details

LEGISLATIVE ASSEMBLY - Closed ePetition Details

Reopen the dedicated acute palliative care beds in Westmead Hospital as a first step towards a stand alone Acute Supportive and Palliative Care Ward

Petitioner: Mrs Caroline Raunjak | Member: Lee, Geoff | No. of Signatories: 1,287 | Date closed: 30/12/2020
To the Speaker and Members of the Legislative Assembly, Since the late 1980’s Westmead Hospital was the first and only major teaching hospital in Australia with a dedicated palliative care ward for the holistic management of patients with complex advanced disease. This ward was staffed with trained palliative care doctors, nurses and allied health staff with an important quiet area for families. These beds were relocated to the oncology ward in 2009. Following the oncology ward refurbishment in 2017, palliative care patients might be able to find a bed in a ward shared with oncology. These beds are NOT designated or quarantined beds for palliative care and most of the time are occupied by non-palliative patients, leaving palliative care patients scattered throughout the hospital in noisy, busy wards, surrounded by people with acute problems and where staff lack palliative care expertise. Patients managed in an acute palliative care ward usually have the most complex symptoms including severe pain, breathlessness, bowel blockages and bone cancer threatening paraplegia to name a few. These issues cannot be managed in sub-acute palliative care wards such as Mt Druitt Hospital or the proposed beds in Auburn Hospital. The lack of skilled specialised palliative care nurses also compromises patient care. Westmead Hospital executive have closed the ward and refuse to reopen the existing 7 beds as dedicated palliative care beds or consider a dedicated stand-alone palliative care ward. Westmead Health Sector is the largest in NSW and the community of Western Sydney deserve better health care. We request to reopen dedicated acute palliative care beds in Westmead Hospital as a first step towards a stand alone Acute Supportive and Palliative Care Ward.