Neasa tonight voted in favour of the Dying with Dignity Bill 2020. There are also a number of important items on supporting and expanding palliative care that Neasa will be making a priority as Green Party spokesperson on health.
The Dying with Dignity Bill 202 sponsored by Gino Kenny, Bríd Smith, Paul Murphy, Mick Barry, Richard Boyd Barrett passed to the next stage of Dáil scrutiny this evening. A government amendment to establish a special Oireachtas Joint Committee for twelve months to scrtinise the bill was defeated.
Neasa voted in favour of the bill (vote breakdown can be found here) but notes that there are also a number of important items on supporting and expanding palliative care that she will be making a priority as Green Party spokesperson on health.
The Programme for Government contains the following commitments:
In developing end-of-life services, the care and dignity of a dying person and their family must be our focus. In ensuring this, we will:
- Increase the number of specialist palliative care beds countrywide over the next five years, ensuring that there will be a hospice serving every region in the country.
- Open new units in Mayo, Waterford, and Wicklow in 2020.
- Progress plans to build units in Drogheda and Cavan, and a further in-patient unit planned for the Midlands.
- Support Community Specialist Palliative Home Care Teams in all HSE areas, fund designated home care packages, and resource specialist palliative care provided in hospices.
- Increase resources for the Children’s Palliative Care Programme. This will be supported by consultants with a special interest in children’s palliative care and children’s outreach nurses to coordinate care for children with life-limiting conditions and their families.
- Publish a new Palliative Care Policy for Adults by mid-2021 to update the 2001 policy. This will reflect the many developments in end-of life care and international best practice and better interact with children’s palliative care.
- Complete the research being carried out in association with the Irish Hospice Foundation into the cost of bereavement and funeral poverty in Ireland. This research will inform our approach to determining any further interventions or supports the State can provide to alleviate any hardship associated with loss and bereavement.