Professor Samar Aoun

Researcher and advocate for end-of-life care, bereavement and grief support

2023 WA Australian of the Year

Professor Samar Aoun advocates for a person-centred approach to end-of-life care. She focuses on under-served groups such as those with motor neurone disease (MND) and dementia, terminally ill people who live alone and family carers.  

As Perron Institute Research Chair in Palliative Care at the University of Western Australia, Samar is known as an international leader in the advocacy of public health approaches to palliative care.  

Her work has strengthened the Compassionate Communities movement that mobilises and equips people to better support those facing death and bereavement. 

As co-founder and chair of the South West Compassionate Communities Network, Samar also volunteers in roles including director on the MND Australia Board, president of the MND Association of WA and a board member of Palliative Care WA. 

Among numerous awards, Samar received the Medal for Excellence from the European Society for Person Centered Healthcare in 2018 and the Centenary Medal in 2003 from Australia’s Prime Minister.