Queensland set to debate euthanasia and palliative care

An inquiry into euthanasia and palliative care has been commenced by the Queensland Parliament with it being referred to the Health, Communities, Disability Services and Domestic and Family Violence Prevention (HCDSDFV) Committee on the 14th November 2018, with the final report due by 30 November 2019.

State Member for Caloundra Mark McArdle said, “Community discussion surrounding euthanasia and palliative care is an invaluable element in the inquiry.

“The questions surrounding euthanasia and palliative care are fraught with deeply emotional, ethical and religious beliefs often coupled with profoundly personal experiences.

“It is because of these experiences I believe it to be incredibly important that we hear from our community. Patients, carers, health care workers, the extended family and indeed all of us have an opinion. Many can tell from personal experience the difficulty these questions arouse.

“Whilst acknowledging the courage and strength it takes to speak about end-of-life options, we can come together and have a genuine and meaningful discussion about a stage of life we will all face one day.

“Within the inquiry the HCDSDFV Committee also will look at the delivery of aged care but with regard to euthanasia the Committee must

‘---report to the Legislative Assembly on:

(b) Queensland community and relevant health practitioners’

views on the desirability of supporting voluntary assisted dying,

including provisions for it being legislated in Queensland and

any necessary safeguards to protect vulnerable persons.’

“The scope for the inquiry will be very wide and will include consideration of other jurisdictions, in Australia and around the world where legislation for end-of-life and voluntary assisted dying is in place.

“I encourage all who have an opinion to read the terms of reference and to let me know their thoughts through a form that has been set up on my website.

“Please note that this is not a formal submission but an opportunity to let me know your thoughts on the matter. You will be able to make a formal submission to the Committee in the coming months. I will keep you updated as to when submissions are open.

“For now let’s commence an honest and respectful discussion here on the Coast about end-of-life knowing that our thoughts and comments could impact on the ultimate report by the Committee,” Mr McArdle concluded.

A discussion form can be access via Mark McArdle MP’s website: www.markmcardlemp.com/euthanasia-discussion

Terms of reference can be found at the Work of the Committees website through Queensland Parliament: https://www.parliament.qld.gov.au/work-of-committees/committees/HCDSDFVPC/inquiries/current-inquiries/AgedCareEOLPC