The UK Government announced yesterday that they will extend the criteria to fast-track benefits payments to terminally-ill claimants in England and Wales, following a long-running campaign led by Marie Curie and the Motor Neurone Disease Association (MNDA).
Leading our response, Head of Advocacy Dominic Carter says, "We welcome the planned changes, allowing terminally ill people fast-tracked access to benefits, which could support many more people needing palliative and end of life care in the future.
"To ensure as many people as possible can benefit from the recommendations, we hope they are implemented effectively and efficiently, including providing appropriate guidance for staff tasked with implementing the new definition.
"Crucially, for these proposals to have the biggest impact, much more needs to be done to ensure anyone reaching the last stages of life is identified, able to access end of life care and suitable support is put in place. As revealed in our recent report Equality in Hospice and End of Life Care, too many people, particularly those who have already faced inequality in their lives, are only identified as being at end of life in their final hours or days.
"This needs to change."