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Developing an end of life care community forum
  1. Chris Haywood1 and
  2. Clare Littlewood2
  1. 1Willowbrook Hospice, St Helens, UK
  2. 2St Helens &Knowsley NHS Trust, Whiston, UK

Abstract

Introduction Embedding end of life care in nursing homes is not sustainable on education packages alone. Evidence shows us that ongoing clinical support needs to be provided if change is to be sustained. The development of a dedicated End of Life Care Community Forum was felt to be a model that could address this issue.

Aims

  • To enable networking and opportunity for care homes to meet for support with end of life care issues

  • To improve end of life care delivery in care homes and assist people to die in the place of their choice reducing hospital admissions at the end of life

  • To establish End of Life Care Champions.

Methods

  • Scoping exercise

  • Senior staff at the Hospice Chair and co-ordinate meetings

  • Engagement with Advance Care Planning Teams (Community)

  • Funding at Network Level to support roll out.

Results

  • Care of residents and staff morale increased

  • Reduced admissions to hospital for end of life care

  • Heightened awareness of End of Life Care Strategy with an increase in the use of end of life tools

  • Electronic communication systems and links to 24/7 telephone advice have been enhanced.

Conclusions

  • Has provided opportunity for improvements in the patients pathway with shared learning between nursing home and specialist palliative care services

  • Staff are empowered to utilise end of life care tools in supporting patients to die in their preferred place of care

  • Requires commitment from all service providers and a level of funding from the local ICN.

Recommendations

  • All nursing homes providing end of life care become active members of the Forum as part of any contracts via Commissioners in line with Quality Markers

  • Consider widening the remit to other service providers where end of life care is offered.

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