One of the first palliative care specialists in Australia, Dr Yvonne McMaster didn’t slow down when she retired. Instead, she signed up to lead a support group for people with advanced cancer.
On learning that funding for palliative care had been cut and resources stretched, Yvonne became one of the country’s most formidable health advocates. It took her just nine months to get funding restored to her local palliative care service before she took her cause across the state.
Her weeks are now filled with meetings with doctors, nurses, hospital authorities and politicians across Australia as she strives to gain more resources for palliative care. She’s led petitions and media campaigns, written countless letters and delivered speeches in country towns and inner city enclaves.
The backbone behind the Push for Palliative crusade, Yvonne has garnered more than 80,000 signatures in support of the right of people to die with dignity and to live as well as possible to the last moment.