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in progress

Development timeline: December 2018 – December 2019

This guidance will adapt the Australia New Zealand Association of Palliative Medicine (ANZPM) palliative sedation therapy guidance for use in Victoria.

Why are we developing this guidance?

We are developing this guidance in response to the palliative sedation recommendations from the Legislative Council and Social Issues Committee Inquiry into end of life choices (2016), recognising a need to support Victorian palliative care services to use palliative sedation therapy in a consistent way.

People at the end of life sometimes experience symptoms that are more difficult to manage than normal. These are symptoms like pain, nausea and breathlessness that are expressed in an extreme way. When this happens, these symptoms are distressing for the person and their family and carers. These symptoms can cause suffering. 

Palliative sedation therapy is used after all the other types of medicines or therapies have been tried. Palliative sedation therapy is managed by specially trained palliative care staff and only after a detailed assessment and a conversation with the patient and their family and carers. Patients can also request to have palliative sedation therapy in their wishes for end of life care.

Scope of guidance 

This guidance is for adults and has been developed for specialist palliative care services to use in both hospital settings and community services. 

This guidance is not intended for use by generalist clinicians. 

Expert working group membership

Juli Moran

Palliative Care Physician

Austin Health
Valerie Armenante Nurse Consultant (Palliative Care) Djerriwarrh Health Services
Melanie Benson Palliative Care Physician Latrobe Regional Hospital/ Peninsula Health
Marie Coffey Nurse Practitioner     Wimmera Health Care Group
Rowan Hearn Consultant in Palliative Medicine Calvary Health Care Bethlehem
Lisha Kuruvilla Palliative Care Pharmacist Barwon Health
Adriana Mulla-Limllari Consumer  
Siva Subramaniam Palliative Care Physician Goulburn Valley Health
Anita Wild Nurse Practitioner Bendigo Health

Get in touch

Jessica Hayward
Safer Care Victoria
+61 3 9096 8364

Page last updated: 14 Nov 2019

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