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AUSTRALIAN MEDICAL ASSOCIATION (WA)
Australian Medical Association (WA) President Dr Omar Khorshid has appeared before the Joint Select Committee on End of Life Choices to answer detailed questions about the AMA’s written submission.
Over almost two hours of evidence, Dr Khorshid emphasised the role of the doctor in supporting patients in all stages of life including birth and death and the ethical principles on which medicine is founded.
Dr Khorshid told the inquiry members that it was vital there was an informed debate in the community about end of life choices, which addressed the broader issues of illness and death, including the role of palliative care and commended the Inquiry for its work to date.
He highlighted the current state of palliative care in WA, and acknowledged that more needed to be done to improve access for patients, especially in rural areas, for chronic debilitating conditions and younger patients.
The upskilling of medical professionals in palliative care was also vital, Dr Khorshid said, including the provision of additional training to junior doctors and clinicians in all specialties.
The Parliamentary Inquiry expressed support for the planned AMA (WA) Symposium on End of Life Choices and asked Dr Khorshid to provide additional comment to members after it was held on 5 May 2018.
Dr Khorshid said the AMA (WA) remained keen to be involved in future conversations around end of life care and to be consulted in the development of any draft legislation.
Following his appearance, Dr Khorshid fronted the media to outline the AMA’s position on end of life care and urged the public to take up the challenge of a robust, measured discussion on end of life choices.