Australian ambulance to grant patients’ dying wishes

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Some of the wishes of terminally ill people are like visiting pets, children or grandchildren, museums and art galleries. Above, is a patient visiting a botanical garden. (AFP)
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The program was inspired by ambulance officers who took a detour to the beach, based on patient's requests, in late 2017. (AFP)
Updated 26 July 2019

Australian ambulance to grant patients’ dying wishes

  • Queensland state government will dedicate a decommissioned ambulance to grant wishes for dying patients
  • The Australian initiative is modelled after a similar program in the Netherlands

SYDNEY: Inspired by an Australian ambulance crew who took a dying woman to the beach on her way to hospital, officials have announced a dedicated vehicle to grant final wishes to terminally ill patients.
In late 2017, ambulance officers in the northern state of Queensland took a detour on the way to hospital as per the wishes of a dying patient who wanted to see the ocean one last time.
The touching gesture was captured by a photo showing a paramedic beside a stretcher facing the ocean at Hervey Bay, on Australia’s northeast coast.
This week the Queensland state government announced it was dedicating a decommissioned ambulance to granting dying wishes of terminally ill patients, such as visiting their pets, their children, their grandchildren or visiting an art gallery or museum.
“Fulfilling the final wishes of people can be challenging as you could be transporting someone who can’t walk, or sit in a chair, or who might require continuous oxygen or other medical appliances and support,” Queensland Health Minister Steven Miles said in a statement.
The Australian-first initiative is modelled on a similar program run in the Netherlands.
“With the Ambulance Wish Queensland program medically trained volunteers, adapted ambulances, and necessary equipment will transport people to fulfil their wish successfully and safely,” Miles added.


Sheep take over streets of Madrid for annual migration

Updated 20 October 2019

Sheep take over streets of Madrid for annual migration

  • The annual event, which started in 1994, allows shepherds to exercise their right to use traditional routes to migrate their livestock
  • The herd includes 2,000 merino sheep and 100 goats

MADRID: Sheep replaced traffic on the streets of Madrid on Sunday as shepherds steered their flocks through the heart of the Spanish capital, following ancient migration routes.
The annual event, which started in 1994, allows shepherds to exercise their right to use traditional routes to migrate their livestock from northern Spain to more southerly pastures for winter grazing.
The route would have taken them through undeveloped countryside a few centuries ago, but today it cuts through Madrid’s bustling city center and along some of its most famous streets.
Sheep farmers pay a nominal charge in symbolic acknowledgement of a 1418 agreement with the city council that set a fee of 50 maravedis — medieval coins — per 1,000 sheep brought through the central Sol square and Gran Via street.
The herd includes 2,000 merino sheep and 100 goats.