I Am Living

Palliative care standards in Australia

Health care professionals providing specialist or generalist palliative care services in Australia adhere to the National Palliative Care Standards. These describe what constitutes safe and high-quality clinical palliative care in Australia, ensures consistency in service delivery, sets expectations in regard to quality management in palliative care, quality improvement and benchmarking, and provides a nationally consistent statement about the level of care expected from health services in Australia.

The Australian Palliative Care Standards can be found here: https://palliativecare.org.au/publication/standards/

The Australian National Palliative Care Strategy, developed with the help of representatives of all who provide palliative care services in Australia, communicates the guiding principles and goals which ensure the highest level of care in Australia. These guiding principles are:


It is important for health care professionals to be accountable to the person in their care, caregiver/s, families, and the community.


Health care professionals advocate for the expressed wishes of the individual in their care, caregivers, families, and communities.


Health care workers show compassion towards the people in their care, their caregivers, and their families.


The dignity of each person, their caregivers, and their families is a priority for health care professionals who recognise that each person is unique, with specific care needs that often change over time.


Health care professionals work with the strengths and limitations of the person and their caregivers and family members to empower them to take charge of their own care.


Resources are made available equitably to all people living with a life-limiting illnesses in Australia.


Health care professionals are committed to the pursuit of excellence in the provision of care and support.


Health care professionals provide a safe environment where all people affected can live and die with respect, dignity and without fear of prejudice or discrimination.

Palliative Care Service Development Guidelines

The Palliative Care Service Development Guidelines further communicate the expectations for service provision and workforce and system capabilities to support the delivery of quality palliative care.

The Palliative Care Service Development Guidelines can be found here:


Other Standards

Other Australian national standards relating to quality care provision for people with life-limiting illnesses are: