Palliative care at home will be further expanded

Palliative care at home will be further expanded
Specially trained nursing staff enable patients to spend their last days at home.

According to surveys, more than 80 percent of people want to die at home.

Thanks to “Hospice and Palliative Care in Mobile Care and Nursing” (HIM), significantly more Upper Austrians now have the opportunity to spend their last days on earth in familiar surroundings. Launched as a pilot project in 2019, HIM is now a permanent part of the offer in Upper Austria. This was announced yesterday by State Councilor for Social Affairs Wolfgang Hattmannsdorfer (VP) at a press conference in Linz.

1,800 employees of the mobile services, which include the Red Cross, Volkshilfe, Caritas, Diakoniewerk, the Arbeiter-Samariter-Bund and the Arcus social network, have been trained in recent years to accompany dying people and their relatives, especially at home, during this difficult time. “In addition to professional competence, this also required a lot of humanity and empathy,” says Hattmannsdorfer.

Dying with dignity and peace

Which patients are eligible for the offer depends on the individual and must of course be medically clarified, said doctor Christina Grebe, chairwoman of the Upper Austrian Hospice Association.

But it is just as important that the conditions for caring for the dying at home are as optimal as possible. “This is where the mobile services help by supporting the relatives. We look very closely at what the patient needs and organize the whole thing,” said Silvia Buchmayr, team leader of the Red Cross’s mobile palliative care team. The costs for the care services are income-dependent and socially staggered.

The first point of contact for inquiries are the aid organizations themselves, but also the social counseling centers in the municipal and district authorities, the experts explained at the press conference. They once again emphasized the importance of HIM. “Caring for the dying shows the humanity of a society. With this project, we are helping to ensure that no one is left alone,” said Silvia Buchmayr.

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