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Lansley brings forward deadline for new palliative care funding regime

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Health secretary Andrew Lansley has said he wants a new system of per-patient funding for end of life care in place by 2015, a year earlier than was recommended in the Palliative Care Funding Review.

The review, which reported earlier this year, said the new system would reduce variation in access to palliative care across England, incentivise the development of community services, and be fair to patients in all settings, whether in hospitals, care homes, hospices, or at home.

Addressing the Help the Hospices’ annual conference last week, Mr Lansley said: “We have an opportunity to give people the best care at the end of their lives. We need to push forward with reform and I want a new system in place by 2015, moving forward faster than the review proposed.”

But the charity’s chief executive, David Praill, warned the intervening years would be a “period of unprecedented change” in healthcare, and palliative care providers would need protection.

“We cannot risk destabilising the current provision of funding, which would have serious implications for people facing the end of life and their friends and family,” he said.

Last week also saw the publication of the Department of Health’s third annual End of Life Care Strategy Report.

Nurses were at the forefront of many examples of good practice described in the report, including work in Torbay to develop local prognostic indicators for identifying non-cancer patients who may be in their last year of life.

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  • 5 Comments

Readers' comments (5)

  • michael stone

    While he is at it, he can get some more appropriate behaviour in place for patients who wish to die in their own homes, as well !

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  • Nice to have someone who is always looking for the negative in palliative care.

    There are some good examples as well you know.

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  • michael stone

    Anonymous | 3-Oct-2011 4:21 pm

    If that comment was aimed at me, I am not always looking for the negatives in palliative care.

    I am always looking at the complexity of palliative care, especially at home, and the difference in perspectives and knowledge between patients, relatives, clinicians and the Police.

    And I keep pointing out that behaviour cannot be anything like 'neutrally balanced' if only the perspective of the professionals is considered to be 'valid'.

    Look up 'Abby Podmore' in Yahoo.

    Of course there are good examples of palliative care, but I am not in the main discussing the clinical aspects of palliative care. I am discussing the rather more complex issue which can only be described as 'the rules for death', especially for those people who wish to die at home.

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  • michael stone

    Anonymous | 3-Oct-2011 4:21 pm

    See:

    http://www.dailymail.co.uk/debate/article-2043672/ANNA-SMITH-Sorry-Abby-Podmore--little-Alfie-deserved-better.html

    and especially the 'what happened next' part. That isn't EoLC, but it illustrates what happens when you combine death and clinical uncertainty.

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  • This article has not got anything to do with palliative care. The little boy was not expected to die, so why would this involve palliatve care? It is agreeably a horrendous situation but I feel it is an argument that does not belong here xx

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