Community members will be able to participate in deciding the future of palliative care in Orange.
The Western NSW Local Health District has agreed to include the public on a panel that will consider expressions of interest by groups seeking to provide inpatient palliative end-of-life care outside Orange hospital.
The WNSWLHD manager of contracts and procurement Suzi Weeks has invited people to email her at firstname.lastname@example.org to express their interest in joining the panel.
A spokeswoman said any applicants would need to show they did not have a conflict of interest.
“The panel will not be formed without having the community member in place,” she said.
The WNSWLHD has not said how many expressions of interest it received when the applications closed on October 2.
Push for Palliative Care Orange chair Jenny Hazelton welcomed the announcement and said the group would seek to have a representative on the panel.
“Absolutely, my message is we will apply,” she said.
Mrs Hazelton said the group would meet on Monday where it was likely the panel position would be discussed.
“We want to have a community representative on the panel that will be suitable,” she said.
She said the scope of any conflict of interest needed to be worked out.
“How do we get a community representative who hasn’t been involved in the process but who is able to provide the [community] feedback.”
Mrs Hazelton said one suggested community member had already been refused.
“A representative who we were happy with who applied was knocked back on a conflict of interest,” she said.
“They need a community member, it was the community who started this.”
When the expressions of interest period was announced WNSWLHD executive director of allied health and innovation Richard Cheney said a 12-month program could start late this year or early in 2019.
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