Contribute to a new study on the impact of hospice care on hospital use at the end of life

As member hospices will recall, Hospice UK has had a long-standing interest in the potential contribution that hospice care can make in reducing the number of people dying in a hospital bed who have no clinical need or wish to be there. 
Around the country, hospices are already leading a range of initiatives that seek either to prevent avoidable unwanted admission to hospital for people approaching the end of life, or facilitate the appropriate and timely transfer of hospital patients who have no clinical need or wish to be in a hospital bed at the end of life, often by working in creative ways with other services.

But little is known about the critical factors that contribute to the success of these initiatives, and even less is known about their cost effectiveness, or the extent to which these initiatives can be replicated more widely to achieve a significant impact on the experiences that people have at the end of life.  
Hospice UK has been selected by NHS England to lead a new project to examine this in more detail. The project, which will run until November 2017, will involve careful analysis of up to 12 hospice-led initiatives around England that appear to be having a positive impact on where people are cared for as well as where they die.
At this stage, we are inviting hospices to express an interest in taking part in this study. Sites will be selected from those expressions of interest. 

What are we looking for?

We are keen to ensure that we include a good spread of hospice-led initiatives in the project, and encourage all hospices (both charitable and NHS) to consider putting themselves forward.

The following points may be useful to you in deciding whether to express an interest:
  • We are interested in hospice-led initiatives that either prevent avoidable unwanted admission to hospital for people at the end of life, or that facilitate appropriate and timely discharge from hospital for people at the end of life.
  • We are particularly interested in services or initiatives that are reaching populations who would not normally access hospice care, and those that are collaborating with other providers or settings, such as care homes, hospitals or others.
  • The project covers England only.
  • It will examine services/initiatives that are already operational.
  • We are looking for a mix of hospices – urban/rural, large/small, inpatient/community, etc.
  • We are particularly keen to hear from hospices who have collected data, or who are using existing data sets and outcomes, to demonstrate the impact of their initiative.

What will participation in this project involve?

Those hospices selected for the project will be asked to provide some information and data about the impact of their initiative. They will also be visited by a data analyst in the early summer who will work with you locally to build a better understanding of the initiative and the lessons learned. 

What will the benefits be?

Participating in the project will be a great way for hospices to share their initiative with others in the palliative and end of life care community. Each of the selected sites will be written up as a case study, and will be included in the final report due to be published in November 2017. 

How to express an interest

Please complete this short pro-forma and return it by email to Jonathan Ellis, director of policy & advocacy, by Tuesday 31 January 2017.

What happens next?

A steering group is being established for this project, and will select the sites to be included in the study. 

Any questions?

If you have any questions, please email Jonathan Ellis, director of policy & advocacy, or call him on 020 7520 8294.  

What does hospice care mean to you?