Catholic hospitals and Catholic aged care providers have welcomed the news the Federal Government has declared it has no intention of reversing a ban to allow the Territories to introduce assisted suicide.
Catholic Health Australia (CHA) said Federal Attorney-General Michaelia Cash’s decision demonstrated a common sense approach to a very sensitive issue.
In her correspondence to the Australian Capital Territory and Northern Territory Attorney-General, Cash is reported to have said that quality palliative care is the preferred option for people with a terminal illness who are seeking relief from pain and suffering.
CHA’s Director of Strategy & Mission Rebecca Burdick Davies said the Commonwealth’s view aligns with that of the Catholic health and aged care services sector.
“We welcome the Attorney-General’s advice that the Government will not roll back laws protecting the vulnerable in the ACT and the Northern Territory,” Davies said.
“This is a welcome bout of common sense on how our society should manage end of life care.
Davies said the Federal Government’s emphasis on quality palliative care is well placed and “our response to suffering should be to improve quality of life, not end it”.
“We will always back the compassionate alternative and our members will continue to offer compassionate care to everyone in the final stages of their life.
“We thank the Attorney-General for displaying leadership and providing clarity on this important issue.”