National Survey of Bereaved People reports high quality of hospice care

Jul 10, 2015

The Office for National Statistics (ONS) today releases data highlighting the hospice sector’s role in providing the UK’s best care for people at the end of life.

The National Survey of Bereaved People 2014, which was commissioned by NHS England, asked bereaved people about the quality of care provided for their loved ones during the last three months of their life.

The quality of care provided by hospices is significantly higher than that provided in hospitals. Of respondents who rated care provided by hospices, 83 per cent rated it as good, excellent or outstanding.  

Being shown dignity and respect by staff in the last three months of life was rated highest in hospices – 88%for hospice doctors and 85% for hospice nurses.

Commenting on the survey, Jonathan Ellis, Director of Policy and Advocacy at Hospice UK, said:

“Once again the National Survey of Bereaved People has shown that hospices provide excellent care for people at the end of life, and care for people with dignity and respect.

“Unfortunately, there is still a lot to be done to ensure everyone in the UK has the best death possible. There is still too much variation in the experiences that people have at the end of life care in different settings, particularly in hospitals.

“This report also raises questions about the coordination of care, with significant numbers of people reporting that in their experience services did not work well together.

“Improving the experiences that people have at the end of life is everybody's business. Hospices have a key role to play in helping to support care in a variety of settings, and in helping people to be cared for in their place of choice. This includes helping to reduce the number of people who find themselves in a hospital bed at the end of life with no clinical need to be there. 

“We need more collaboration and joint working between hospices and the rest of the health and care system to help deliver high quality end of life care for all.”

Notes to Editor

  • The National Survey of Bereaved People (VOICES) 2014 was commissioned by the NHS England. It is administered by the Office for National Statistics (ONS). The full survey findings are available to view on the ONS website.
  • Hospice UK is the national charity for hospice care and the only membership body for organisations providing hospice care. We support and champion the work of more than 200 of these organisations across the UK.
  • Hospices, and other organisations which provide hospice care, offer vital care for people with terminal or life-limiting conditions and also support their families and carers.
  • For further information about hospice care visit our website or follow us on Twitter @hospiceukPA.
  • Get all the latest news from the hospice and palliative care sector, as well as patient stories, on ehospice UK. This service is managed by Hospice UK. You can also follow ehospice news on Twitter at @ehospicenews

Media enquiries:

Please contact Stephen Clark on 020 7520 8224 or by email at s.clark@hospiceuk.org. For out of hours media enquiries please call 07881 940 318.

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