Background Dementia is the leading cause of death in the United Kingdom. Specialists in end of life care need to adapt to the needs of the increasingly older population which it serves. There is pressure on the National Health Service to provide cost effective, evidence-based care and to avoid unnecessary hospital admissions at the end of life. Recent national data shows that 32% of people with dementia die in hospital.
Aim To understand whether a hospice-led dementia team influences the number of hospital and home deaths in patients with dementia, compared with national data.
Methods A sample of patients who were supported by the specialist dementia team was selected retrospectively, to include all deaths between 1st June 2017 and 31st May 2018 (n=39). We have counted all the deaths using Excel spreadsheet and separated deaths into four different categories: Home, Hospice, Hospital and Care Home.
Results There were 39 deaths of patients with dementia that received support from the Dementia Nurse Specialists.
Of these patients 69% of them achieved their preferred place of death.
Conclusion Receiving care from a hospice-based dementia nurse specialist team was associated with a much higher home death rate of 49%, compared with the national figure of 8%. It was also associated with a lower rate of hospital deaths – 18% compared with 32%.
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