Palliative Care Queensland

Your Death Your Choice Community Forum

Following last year’s very successful Your Death Your Choice Community Forum in Brisbane, Palliative Care Queensland and Cancer Voices Queensland are pleased to announce that a second forum will be hosted on the Sunshine Coast on Saturday May 19th. The Your Death Your Choice forum provides a welcome opportunity for an open and honest discussion about death and dying in modern-day Queensland.

According to Associate Professor Rohan Vora, President of Palliative Care Queensland, because South East Queensland has long been a destination of choice for retirees in search of a warmer climate, it now has one of fastest growing populations of Australians over the age of 65. This includes growing numbers of chronically ill people who require complex medical care, including palliative care.

“The problem is that funding to palliative care services in Queensland has not kept pace with the growing referral rates, therefore there is much less funding available to us to ensure that people die comfortable, dignified deaths”, says Associate Professor Vora. “Are we really surprised that most Queenslanders support physician assisted suicide when our current system cannot provide adequate care?”

Associate Professor Vora warns that some of the presentations at Your Death Your Choice will be confronting, but that it is essential to provide an opportunity to demystify the process of death, as well as discuss the reasons why many Queenslanders still die without having their pain well managed.

“Everyone knows that death is a part of life, and that it’s a normal and natural occurrence. In reality however, Australians rarely talk about it and as a result, our health system is primed towards saving life at all costs.”

The Your Death Your Choice Community Forum will take place at Events Centre Maroochy on the Sunshine Coast on Saturday May 19th, marking the start of National Palliative Care Week 2012. Your Death Your Choice brings together politicians, including Senators Sue Boyce, Claire Moore and Larissa Waters, as well as academics, health professionals and well know personalities including former Lord Mayor of Brisbane Jim Soorley. The forum will conclude with a panel discussion where experts, including euthanasia advocate and former Northern Territory Chief Minister Marshall Perron, will debate the topic of physician assisted suicide.

Tickets are strictly limited. For more information about the Your Death Your Choice Community Forum or to purchase tickets for this event, please visit www.yourdeathyourchoice.com.au .

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