Taking the last breath

MOST Australians do not die where they want — about seven out of 10 would prefer to die at home, yet in reality only about 14% do.

Nearly twice as many people in Ireland, New Zealand, France and the US have a non-institutional death. So what’s wrong with our system and what can GPs in Australia do to help more of their patients fulfil their end-of-life wishes?

Cost is one hurdle in changing the current system.

In a recent article in the Medical Journal of Australia,1 Professor Hal Swerissen and Dr Stephen Duckett from the Grattan Institute, Melbourne,