Background: Payment models for palliative care vary across nations, with few adopting contemporary payments designs that apply to other parts of the health system.
Aim: To propose optimal payment arrangements for palliative care.
Approach: Review of relevant literature on funding mechanisms in health care generally and palliative care in particular.
Results: Payment models for palliative care should move toward activity-based funding using an agreed classification, be uncapped funding with performance monitoring, and make explicit use of performance metrics and reporting.
Conclusions: If palliative care is to become a universally accessible service, new approaches to funding, based on the experience of funding reforms in other parts of the health system, need to be adopted.