- Cancer Information
- Advanced cancer
- Palliative care
- Common questions about palliative care
- Do I have to pay for palliative care?
Do I have to pay for palliative care?
The federal, state and territory governments fund a range of palliative care services that are free in the public health system, whether you receive care at home, in a residential aged care facility, or in hospital (inpatient care).
Sometimes you may need to pay part of the cost of care. Examples of extra costs include:
- hiring specialised equipment for use at home
- paying for medicines
- paying for your own nursing staff if you choose to stay at home and need 24-hour assistance
- paying an excess if you have private health insurance that covers palliative care and you go to a private hospital
- using short-term care (respite services) that charge a fee
- paying the fee of a private allied health professional, such as a psychologist or physiotherapist (you may be eligible for a Medicare rebate for up to five visits per calendar year as part of a Chronic Disease Management Plan with your GP)
- paying for complementary therapies, such as massage therapy and acupuncture.
For more specific information, contact your state or territory palliative care organisation. For contact details, call Cancer Council 13 11 20 or visit palliativecare.org.au/members.
If you are admitted to a public hospital, palliative care unit or other facility as a private patient and you have private health insurance, check what is covered with your health fund. Ask your social worker about what financial help is available for patients and carers from Centrelink and other organisations in your area.
Podcast for people affected by advanced cancer
Dr Cynthia Parr, Specialist in Palliative Care, HammondCare and Macquarie University Hospital, NSW; Dr Lisa Cuddeford, Clinical Lead, WA Paediatric Palliative Care Service, WA; Dr Laura Kirsten, Principal Clinical Psychologist, Nepean Cancer Care Centre, NSW; Penny Neller, Project Coordinator, National Palliative Care Projects, Australian Centre for Health Law Research, Queensland University of Technology, QLD; Caitriona Nienaber, 13 11 20 Consultant, Cancer Council WA; A/Prof Peter Poon, Director, Supportive and Palliative Care, Monash Health, and Adjunct Associate Professor, Monash University, VIC; Dr Kathy Pope, Radiation Oncologist, Peter MacCallum Cancer Centre, VIC; Kate Reed-Cox, Nurse Practitioner National Clinical Advisor, Palliative Care Australia; Juliane Samara, Nurse Practitioner, Clare Holland House – Specialist Palliative Aged Care, Calvary Public Hospital, ACT; Annabelle Solomon, Consumer; Silvia Stickel, Consumer; Kaitlyn Thorne, Manager, PalAssist, Cancer Council Queensland; Kim Vu, Consumer; Rosie Whitford, Social Worker – Grief, Bereavement and Community Palliative Care, Prince of Wales Hospital, NSW.
View the Cancer Council NSW editorial policy.
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