Background In December 2013, a partnership between five local health districts and a non-governmental organisation implemented the Palliative Care Home Support Packages (PEACH) Program. The PEACH Program aims to support palliative care clients in their last days of life at their own home. This study sought to evaluate the quality of care delivered by the service from the perspective of clients’ primary carers.
Methods A letter was sent to carers of clients 6–10 weeks after the client’s death, inviting them to participate in an anonymous survey. The survey measured the level of satisfaction on various aspects of the service using FAMCARE and Likert scales, and invited for comments about the care received and suggestions for improvement.
Results Out of 17 aspects of care provided by the PEACH Program, 13 were scored with ‘exceptional’ or ‘acceptable performance’. The highest satisfaction was observed in meeting clients’ physical needs and providing pain relief. The most dissatisfaction was observed in addressing spiritual matters, family conferences and information about treatment side effects. Ninety-five per cent of responses were either ‘satisfied’ or ‘very satisfied’ with the overall care provided at home during the last week of the client’s life.
Conclusion The results of this research provide further evidence to the field of what constitutes a good home death and the support mechanisms required to enable this. The results also have strong implications on how local services provided by the PEACH Program are delivered in the future.
- clinical decisions
- home care
- quality of life
- terminal care
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Collaborators Members of the PEACH Program Inter-District Executive Management Group (June 2016): South Western Sydney LHD: Amanda Larkin; Nepean Blue Mountains LHD: Kay Hayman, Alan Oloffs; Illawarra Shoalhaven LHD: Narelle Evry; Sydney LHD: Philip Beale, Lou-Anne Blunden; Western Sydney LHD: Philip Lee, Andrew Newton; Primary Health Networks: Keith McDonald, Amanda McInnes, Lizz Reay; Silver Chain Group: Clark Chambers, Caroline Marasovic; Consumer Representative: Jim Colvin. Members of the PEACH Program Research & Evaluation Working Party (June 2016): Nepean Blue Mountains LHD: Michael Noel; Sydney LHD: Ivanka Komusanac; Western Sydney LHD: Chris Pene; Primary Health Networks: Jackie Janosi; Silver Chain Group: Joanna Smith.
Contributors Each author made a considerable contribution to the study and met the full requirements for authorship. JSFC was responsible for overall content and was the study chief investigator. GB, JH and MA contributed to the design of the study. JSFC, JS and KJ were involved in planning of work, data analysis and reporting.
Funding The South Western Sydney Local Health District (SWSLHD) is the contract holder for the PEACH Program as a result of a successful NSW Health Tender in 2013. SWSLHD in partnership with Silver Chain Group have provided packages to support community-based palliative care services across South Western as well as Nepean Blue Mountains, Western Sydney (until June 2017), Sydney and Illawarra Shoalhaven.
Competing interests None declared.
Patient consent for publication Not required.
Ethics approval Approval was obtained from the South Western Sydney Local Health District Human Research Ethics Committee (HREC Reference: LNR/14/LPOOL/221).
Provenance and peer review Not commissioned; externally peer reviewed.
Data availability statement Data may be obtained from a third party and are not publicly available.
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