Hospice UK comments on Dying Matters survey about attitudes to death

May 12, 2016

A ComRes survey on behalf of the annual Dying Matters Awareness Week has discovered that there has been an increase in the percentage of Britons who are comfortable to talk about their own deaths.

Unfortunately, this research has also highlighted several areas where people are not preparing well enough by sharing their wishes concerning future care.

Commenting on the findings, Tracey Bleakley, Chief Executive at national hospice care charity Hospice UK, said:

“Hospices see the importance of having conversations about death and dying every day. These conversations can make a difficult time feel less unknown and give people back some sense of control when illness and circumstance can feel overwhelming.

“That people are more comfortable discussing death is encouraging as more of us are living to older age, and often with more complex medical needs. We need to confidently discuss how we wish to be cared for with those closest to us and those involved in our care. Doing this before a medical need forces us to think about it can save us and our loved ones from unnecessary anxiety and emotional distress.

“Unfortunately, Dying Matters found that just 7% of people have written down their wishes for future care. We are getting better at talking about our own deaths but we still seem to be uncomfortable putting our expectations in writing. Dying Matters Awareness Week is a great opportunity to remind everyone that talking about dying, or even writing about it, won’t make it happen.”

Download the full survey report.

Notes to editor

  • 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 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 @ehospicenews.

Media enquiries

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

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