Scholarships support diverse voices at peak palliative care conference

Close to 80 scholarships have been awarded allowing a diverse range of health professionals and volunteers to attend the southern hemisphere’s peak palliative care conference.

The 2023 Oceanic Palliative Care Conference (23OPCC) next month in Sydney will bring together over 1000 clinicians, leaders, researchers, and carers with the view of increasing access to quality palliative care.

“We have put together a strong three-day program that complements the connection between palliative care and the current aged care, primary health, and disability reforms, while highlighting the needs and opportunities of the future,” says Camilla Rowland, Chief Executive Officer, Palliative Care Australia (PCA).

“It’s important that the ideas and innovation presented at the conference flow back to communities right around Australia and the wider Oceanic region.

“I want to thank our scholarship sponsors for making this possible – the Department of Health and Aged Care, Cancer Australia, Calvary, and NSW Department of Health.”

Over 380 scholarship applications were received, covering everything from registrations to the cost of getting to 23OPCC from places as far away as Broome, Katherine, northeast Arnhem Land, Papua New Guinea, Samoa and more.

A rigorous blind review process drew on the judgement of sector leaders, with priority given to:

  • Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Health Workers
  • People working in palliative care in aged care or primary health in Australia
  • Palliative care consumers and carers
  • Palliative care volunteers
  • People with less than three years’ experience in palliative care who have not previously attended the Oceanic Palliative Care Conference
  • People working in palliative care in rural or remote areas of Australia
  • People working in palliative care from the Oceanic region

“We know that the cost of taking part is always a barrier, and our hope is that these scholarships enable important voices to be heard and experiences to be shared,” Ms Rowland says.

Those awarded scholarships include people from right across the palliative care and health sectors, including paramedics, medical students, social workers and pharmacists.

“OPCC represents a critical learning and development opportunity, and we want that to influence and grow the care people receive – wherever they are,” Ms Rowland says.


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