Palliative Care and The Art of Dying Well

Posted on May 27, 2021 
Filed under Culture wars, Resources

“Modern palliative care emerged in the late 1960s through the work of Dame Cicely Saunders, widely acknowledged as its founder, in the United Kingdom. She believed that caring for people requires caring about them. She combined the tradition of hospitality in medieval religious communities (hospice) with modern medical techniques for treatment of symptoms.

She studied the stories of terminally ill patients and found that their suffering involved, not just physical pain, but also had social, emotional, psychological and spiritual aspects. …”

– At The Gospel Coalition Australia, palliative care doctor Megan Best writes during National Palliative Care Week (23-29 May 2021).

By contrast:

A media release from the Australian Christian Lobby:

South Australian Parliament votes to end life during Palliative Care Week – Australian Christian Lobby.

This week is National Palliative Care Week in Australia. It is a time that the nation’s mind should be focused on supporting and caring for the terminally ill.

Instead, the South Australian Parliament last night voted to progress the physician assisted suicide bill.

Christopher Brohier, SA Director for the Australian Christian Lobby said, “It is evident that government resources are being used to further the physician assisted suicide bill.

“The Health Minister last week released an anonymous paper from Wellbeing SA arguing against institutional conscientious objection rights. The government is therefore putting itself in direct conflict with Calvary Hospitals, one of the state’s largest palliative care providers.

“The Parliament and the Health Minister must take into account the views of Calvary Hospitals,” said Mr Brohier. “The bill must be amended in the committee stage to provide for institutional conscientious objection rights.”

The ACL urged the South Australian Parliament to reject the bill or significantly amend it when the third reading vote occurs.