Background and aims With Scottish Government’s integration of health and social care, social care teams are increasingly leading the care for elderly clients and their families who are living with a terminal illness and also have multiple complex care needs. Addressing the learning needs of social care workers is essential to ensure the provision of high quality palliative care for families’ in their preferred place of care, and to reduce emergency admissions to hospital where avoidable.
The education programme increases the knowledge and confidence of social care workers in a care home or home care setting in Lothian, in caring for people and their families living with a terminal illness. It increases the ability to identify people with palliative care needs and improves awareness of community services available to support patients as they approach end of life.
Methods Through consultation, a tiered approach to learning was developed. Care workers attended a single training day, with a portion going on to complete an online module. The module was contextualised to reflect the Lothian focus. Care workers were supported in their care setting by a workplace mentor. Mentorship training and support was provided by the programme team.
Results 500 social care workers will have completed the single day training and 75 will have gone on to have completed the online professional development module by the conference date. Single day evaluation, pre- and post-knowledge and confidence questionnaire and focus groups are being used to evaluate the programme and its transferability.
Conclusions To achieve the aims set out in the Strategic Framework for Action on Palliative and End of Life Care, it is essential that social care teams are adequately supported and trained to provide high quality palliative care for people and their families living with a terminal illness.
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