National Palliative Care Week Encouraging curiosity and conversations when it comes to ‘Matters of Life and Death’

  • by Maria Lopez
  • May 17, 2024

National Palliative Care Week (NPCW) 2024 returns from 19 May to 25 May 2024. The week marks the nation’s largest annual initiative aimed at deepening people’s understanding of palliative care and encouraging action around end-of-life planning.

This year we are highlighting the real and growing need to educate and empower Australians about quality of life towards the end of life.  We are asking the community to be curious about palliative care and to talk to us and their trusted healthcare professional about what palliative care is and how it can be accessed.

“With more education and awareness throughout the community, we hope that there will be an improved understanding of palliative care. It is not about giving up, not just for the dying, and not only for the very last few days of life. It is about living your life as well and as comfortably as you can to the very end” says Kirsty Blades, CEO, Palliative Care NSW.

In support of this year’s campaign Palliative Care NSW will be leading and supporting conversations with the community. We aim to bust palliative care myths and empower individuals to talk about what matters most to them.  We will also be raising awareness of the services available to people diagnosed with a life-limiting illness which can provide them, their families and carers with person-centred and holistic care.

We are encouraging anyone in the community to talk to us about….

  • Living well to the very end;
  • What matters most to you;
  • Getting the support you need;
  • Caring for someone at end-of-life;
  • Myth busting palliative and end-of-life care; and
  • Supporting the community through volunteering.

“Palliative Care NSW has a dedicated Palliative Care Guidance Manager ready to provide support and advice to anyone in the community.  Talk to us by calling 02 8076 5604 or emailing [email protected].  Our NSW Service Directory is also a great way to locate a palliative care service in your area and can be found on our website:”

Another significant part of NPCW this year, is the official launch of our new logo featuring the new symbol for palliative care, the ‘orange heart’.  The ‘orange heart’ has been seen and used universally as a symbol for care and friendship and it is now the new symbol of the palliative care sector. The eight ‘sparks’ coming from the heart give it a sense of motion, a beating heart that points to the life palliative care supports; the sparks also represent Australia’s eight states and territories and the role we all play in the delivery of palliative care.

“We are encouraging everyone to buy and wear an orange heart lapel pin as a show of support for the people and families receiving palliative care and those who deliver it.”

Orange heart lapel pins will be available for purchase from the PCNSW website. Funds raised will support advocacy and policy initiatives that help deliver palliative care to more Australians.

“Connected to the orange heart and our overall aim with National Palliative Care Week is an opportunity to thank and recognise the people who deliver palliative care,” Ms Blades says.

“Quality palliative care relies on highly skilled healthcare professionals from specialist GPs and nurses to occupational therapists, psychologists and social workers, working as part of a multi-disciplinary team.  Supporting the sector are the primary care GPs and nurses, researchers, educators, administrators, data analysts, policy officers, care workers and many more.  This is truly a career with purpose and we encourage more graduates and healthcare professionals to consider a palliative care specialist pathway as the demand for palliative care grows.”

“Running alongside National Palliative Care Week is National Volunteer Week and trained palliative care volunteers are also an important part of the sector.  In NSW, over 1,100 volunteers from 38 palliative care volunteer services are part of a palliative care team and are actively involved in offering human companionship to people receiving palliative care and to their families. They provide comfort, reduce isolation, and bring respite to family and carers.”

More information on events being held and what the public can do to support the campaign and resources can be obtained from PCNSW’s website here.

To download media release in pdf, click HERE

For more information and images, to request an interview (Kirsty Blades, CEO or Felicity Burns, President) or to receive an orange heart lapel pin to show your support, please contact [email protected] or call 0400 890 092.

For a Sydney metro photo opportunity, National Palliative Care Week street banners are currently located on Elizabeth Street, between Park St and Liverpool St.

Upcoming Events

NSW Network of Managers of Palliative Care Volunteers – September meeting
  • SEPTEMBER 12, 2024
  • 10:00 AM - 12:00 PM

NSW Network of Managers of Palliative Care Volunteers – September meeting

The role of the Network is to ensure best practice for NSW Managers of Pall...

Read more
NSW Network of Managers of Palliative Care Volunteers – December meeting & Christmas lunch
  • DECEMBER 12, 2024
  • 10:00 AM - 12:00 PM

NSW Network of Managers of Palliative Care Volunteers – December meeting & Christmas lunch

The role of the Network is to ensure best practice for NSW Managers of Pall...

Read more

Become a member of Palliative Care NSW

Palliative Care New South Wales is the peak body in NSW representing palliative care providers and those with an interest in palliative care. Palliative Care New South Wales is a member of the national peak body Palliative Care Australia.

Join today and receive discounts, benefits and more!
Special member rate available for volunteers.

Subscribe to our eNews

Be the first to know our latest new, events, and research!