Background The Care Home Palliative Education Programme is rolled out over 13 Care Homes and addresses: – palliative and end of life care, symptom control, communication skills, (Sage and Thyme), advance care planning and bereavement needs assessment.
Aim The aim of the education programme is to increase the knowledge, skills and confidence of the care staff which enables them to identify appropriate patients early and address the need for future planning as well as providing palliative and end of life care whilst supporting and involving families.
Method The education programmes are delivered in the care home and tailored to meet their specific needs. Working alongside care staff caring for our patients and families allows the hospice team and the staff to see the benefit of the education programme in practice and also to provide hands on 1: 1 education and support. This model of working also enables the team and staff to identify further educational opportunities.
Future planning with patients and families often takes place initially with the CNS until the staff feel confident. Using the wIPADS Framework has enabled staff to document and share these plans with the community MDT which has helped to reduce unnecessary admissions, investigations and treatments. Our patients often have multi-morbidities and parallel planning between specialities is essential in order to affirm life and prepare for death. The CNS and members of our family support team also provide carer support for families and on occasions for staff.
Results During the last 18 months the service has received approximately 180 referrals from our care home community of which 128 patients died. 126 patients died in the care home and two died in hospital. The enthusiastic care home staff supported by the hospice team and ongoing education programme has helped to reduce unnecessary admissions and ensures patient-centred care.
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