Choice for Home-Based Care

Friday March 01, 2024

TWO pharmacies in the Limestone Coast will provide better access to palliative care medications.

Gambier City Pharmacy and TerryWhite Chemmart Kingcraig in Naracoorte have both signed up for the new initiative which is expected to allow South Australians to continue treatment at home and avoid visiting emergency departments.

The Palliative Care Medicines Pharmacy Network will allow access to core palliative care medicines for people with life-limiting illnesses, including after-hours access in urgent situations.

The Limestone Coast pharmacies are two of 30 across the state participating in the network.

The network pharmacies will keep a minimum stock of the core palliative care medicines and provide critical support, information and advice to palliative care patients, their families and carers as well as other professionals.

Member for Mount Gambier Troy Bell said having better access to palliative care medicines represented a "significant step" in addressing the "complex needs" of patients nearing the end of life.

"I have been advocating for greater palliative care services for some time and I am a great believer in giving people the choice for where they wish to receive their care," Mr Bell said.

"I am pleased to see that this initiative has incorporated regional pharmacies, including Mount Gambier.

"Greater support for patients to be able to stay at home in a comfortable environment is to be commended." Minister for Health and Wellbeing Chris Picton said palliative care could be a "difficult time" for both the person going through it and their families and carers.

 "We are making it easier for South Australians in palliative care to access medication to alleviate pain and stress, and to maintain the best quality of life and comfort they can while in their home surroundings," Mr Picton said.

"This will mean they won't have to visit a hospital's emergency department to get access to the medication.

"The 30 community pharmacies in the state will improve end of life care for all South Australians.