Today (20 May) the Parliamentary and Health Service Ombudsman (PHSO) publishes a new report Dying Without Dignity which features cases of inadequate end of life care resulting from a range of issues such as poor communication with families of dying people and inadequate out-of-hours services.
It highlights how end of life care could be improved for up to 355,000 people a year in England.
Commenting on the report, Dr Ros Taylor MBE, National Director for Hospice Care at Hospice UK, said:
“Dying people and their families should never have had to go through the unbearable experiences highlighted in this report.
“It is tragic that so many of these cases could have been avoided with better communication and coordinated care.
“There is too much inconsistency in the care that dying people and their families receive and making sure that everyone can get the best care possible must be a much bigger priority.
“This report highlights the urgent need for NHS colleagues to work with hospices to tackle issues around communication, family support and decisions about what matter to people when time is short. Some hospitals are already tapping into hospice expertise and working successfully at a local level to improve end of life care.
“Dying people deserve nothing less than compassionate, co-ordinated care that meets their needs and wishes and allows them to spend their final moments in peace and dignity with their families. It should not be so difficult to get this right.”
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 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 at: www.ehospice.com/uk This service is managed by Hospice UK. You can also follow ehospice news on Twitter at @ehospicenews.