Response to Voluntary Assisted Dying Act 2021 Queensland
St Vincent's Private Hospital Brisbane and St Vincent's Private Hospital Northside
St Vincent’s Private Hospital Brisbane and St Vincent's Private Hospital Northside are committed to excellent end-of-life care and are part of a Catholic health and aged care community that has been serving the Australian community since 1957 and 2001 respectively.
When our patients are experiencing a life-limiting illness, we support and care for them to ensure they die in comfort and with dignity. We do this through commitments to:
- heal and never harm;
- relieve pain and other physical symptoms of illness and frailty;
- address psychological distress;
- withdraw life-prolonging treatments when they are medically futile or overly burdensome, or when a person wants them withdrawn; and
- never abandon patients.
We do not consider that the prescription of a lethal substance to a person to help them end their own life, nor the administration of a lethal substance to a person by a health practitioner to end their life, are part of end-of-life care. Our position is consistent with the Australian Medical Association and the World Medical Association. It is these acts which became legal under Queensland’s ‘Voluntary Assisted Dying’ (VAD) laws.
The law allows healthcare providers in Queensland to choose whether or not to participate in the state’s ‘Voluntary Assisted Dying’ (VAD) system. As a result, St Vincent’s Private Hospitals does not provide VAD services at any of our facilities.
We recognise that some patients may wish to explore the option of VAD while under our care. We are committed to receiving any enquiries about VAD in a compassionate and respectful manner.
Similarly, if a patient wishes to access VAD from another provider, we will not impede them. We provide release from care as well as transfer if they wish to access services available elsewhere. We will always maintain our commitment to care for patients who are considering or pursuing VAD. We will abide by all relevant Queensland legislation.
Information about Queensland’s VAD laws is provided by Queensland Health: https://health.qld.gov.au/vad