Yesterday, the Senate Public Health and Welfare Committee passed HB 2031, which establishes a State Advisory Council to identify challenges and explore opportunities to expand access to palliative care in Kansas. (You may remember that Family Policy Alliance of Kansas worked to promote this same bill as it worked its way through the Kansas House of Representatives last session.)
Palliative care is an approach to health care delivery that prioritizes the patient’s wellbeing while treating illnesses and diseases, like cancer. It focuses on providing the best quality of life for a patient through a team-based approach by offering relief from pain, fatigue, stress, nausea, and other symptoms of serious chronic illness. Palliative care is consistent with a pro-life ethic in that it recognizes the humanity of each patient, rather than viewing them as merely a “case” to be “solved.”
Despite a growing body of evidence showing its benefits, there remains a lack of understanding about palliative care among the public, doctors, nurses, and others in the health care system. This is the main obstacle to giving patients access to such life-affirming care. HB 2031 is an important step in expanding understanding among health care providers and access for patients and their families.
You can help promote life affirming health care in Kansas, as HB 2013 now goes to the full Senate. Visit the Family Policy Alliance of Kansas Action Center and let your State Senator know you support HB 2031 – and they should, too.
President and Executive Director