Models of Care

Models of Care

What we Know

Not all people at end-of-life will need specialist palliative care but a palliative approach or palliative care should be available when and where it is required. Various models for palliative care delivery and their components exist without a univocally-accepted model. However, models of palliative care appear to show benefits for patients and their carers, with no evidence of negative effects, irrespective of setting or patient characteristics.

For older people, community palliative care and palliative care in residential aged care facilities (RACF) have shown to be beneficial but more high-quality research is needed for the benefits and cost-effectiveness to be well understood.

It is difficult to detail specific practice points in relation to this topic as the success of any model of care will depend on the profile/needs of clients or residents, the available services and resources, and the health system structure and the policy, sociocultural and economic context.

What can I do?

Remember all care providers can contribute to quality care of older people approaching the end of their life. 

Realise that I am part of a team helping to provide care.

Remember that care is person centred and this is guided by and emphasised in the Aged Care Quality Standards, the Diversity Framework, and the Charter of Rights.


What can I learn?

Read: Luckett T, Phillips J, Agar M, Virdun C, Green A, Davidson PM. Elements of effective palliative care models: a rapid review. BMC Health Serv Res. 2014 Mar 26;14:136.

Refer to the Age Care Standards and if you are unsure about the standards check out the palliAGED In Focus series.

Remember that Multidisciplinary team members should all have an understanding of end of life care.


What can my organisation do?

Review the processes in place for referral and the relationships established with local services including GPs, specialists and PHNs.




Page updated 24 April 2020