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Most people say that, if they had a terminal illness, they would prefer to be cared for at home and to die there if possible.[1] The PCAM project funded by the NWM PHN aims to support that preference by supporting palliative care in the community and assisting people who wish to die at home through enhanced planning and timely access to essential medicines.


 The PSA, the peak national organisation for pharmacists working in all sectors, has been engaged by the NWM PHN to coordinate this project. We invite all community pharmacies within the NWM PHN region to participate in this initiative. A key objective of the PCAM project is to ensure community-based palliative patients have timely access to palliative care medicines to relieve suffering associated with emergent end-of-life symptoms.


A Core Medicines List (CML) has been established for the NWM PHN region through consultation with local palliative care providers in the NWM PHN region. The CML (Table 1) addresses the main symptoms commonly seen during terminal phase (pain, delirium, nausea, dyspnoea, and noisy breathing), and also takes in to account affordability and accessibility, by considering the need for parenteral administration and availability through the Pharmaceutical Benefits Scheme.

[1] Palliative Care Australia. Supporting palliative care patients who choose to die at home. Available from: [Accessed 6 November 2020]
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