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Aust Fam Physician. 2001 Jan;30(1):59-62.

Developing palliative care services in regional areas. The Ipswich Palliative Care Network model.

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University of Queensland.



Although there are over 350 palliative care services present in Australia and New Zealand, the distribution of these is patchy. Patients in some regional and rural areas have little or no access to specialist services, and manage with the enthusiasm and general expertise of local practitioners.


This paper discusses the problems encountered in maintaining skills in palliative care in the face of small patient numbers and poor resources, and describes a solution that was developed in Ipswich, Queensland.


The twin problem of GP skills maintenance and adequate community service provision in palliative care can be overcome by developing a general practice based service in conjunction with local health authorities and the community. Highlighting the benefits to the health authority and the community of maximal general practitioner involvement is the most important lever in securing cooperation.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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