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Current collaboration between palliative care and neurology: a survey of clinicians in Europe
  1. David Oliver1,
  2. Gian Domenico Borasio2,
  3. Simone Veronese3,
  4. Raymond Voltz4,
  5. Stefan Lorenzl5 and
  6. Nilay Hepgul6
  1. 1Tizard Centre, University of Kent, Canterbury, Kent, UK
  2. 2Service de soins palliatifs, Centre Hospitalier Universitaire Vaudois, Lausanne, Switzerland
  3. 3Palliative Care, Fondazione FARO, Turin, Italy
  4. 4Department of Palliative Medicine, University of Cologne, Koln, Nordrhein-Westfalen, Germany
  5. 5Institute of Nursing Sciences and Practice, Paracelsus Medical University Salzburg, Salzburg, Austria
  6. 6Cicely Saunders Institute of Palliative Care, Policy and Rehabilitation, London, UK
  1. Correspondence to Professor David Oliver, Tizard Centre, University of Kent, Canterbury, Kent, UK; drdjoliver{at}


Introduction The collaboration between palliative care and neurology has developed over the last 25 years and this study aimed to ascertain the collaboration between the specialties across Europe.

Methods This online survey aimed to look at collaboration across Europe, using the links of the European Association for Palliative Care and the European Academy of Neurology.

Results 298 people completed the survey—178 from palliative care and 120 from neurology from over 20 countries across Europe. They reported that there was good collaboration in the care for people with amyotrophic lateral sclerosis and cerebral tumours but less for other progressive neurological diseases. The collaboration included joint meetings and clinics and telephone contacts. All felt that the collaboration was helpful, particularly for maintaining quality of life, physical symptom management, psychological support and complex decision making, including ethical issues.

Discussion The study shows evidence for collaboration between palliative care and neurology, but with the need to develop this for all neurological illness, and there is a need for increased education of both areas.

  • neurological conditions
  • education and training
  • quality of life
  • service evaluation

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  • Contributors DO, GDB, SV, RV, SL and NH contributed to study design and implementation of the study and analysis of the dataset, provided critical feedback and revisions on the manuscript and approved the final version for submission.

  • Funding The authors have not declared a specific grant for this research from any funding agency in the public, commercial or not-for-profit sectors.

  • Competing interests None declared.

  • Patient consent for publication Not required.

  • Ethics approval This study was approved by the Ethics Committee of the Tizard Centre, University of Kent, Canterbury, UK on 27 June 2018. There is no reference number.

  • Provenance and peer review Not commissioned; externally peer reviewed.

  • Data availability statement Data are available on reasonable request. All data relevant to the study are included in the article. Data are available from the authors.