Health care professionals are completing studies about the best in palliative and end of life care thanks to a partnership between Queenscourt Hospice, Southport, and Edge Hill University in Ormskirk.
The master’s level module, Transforming Integrated Palliative and End of Life Care, saw its first intake of students in March.
Twenty-five students including nurses, doctors and physiotherapists enrolled on the course. They included 13 staff from Southport and Ormskirk Hospital NHS Trust as well the hospice.
Students use scenarios based around Ivy Street, a fictional community, and its families to translate theory into practice, considering the available evidence and how to put it into practice and developing their knowledge, skills and confidence.
Dr Karen Groves is Consultant in Palliative Care at the Trust and Medical and Education Director at Queenscourt.
She said: “Palliative and end of life care is crucial to those who need it – and we have only one chance to get it right for patients and their families.
“We know staff are keen to do their very best yet many feel they don’t have knowledge, confidence or skills to ensure their care is the very best.
“This interactive, clinically-focused, course covers all the key components of holistic palliative and end of life care, to enable enthusiastic frontline professionals to provide the finest possible care for the patient and their family.”
Prof Barbara Jack, Head of Research in the Faculty of Health and Social Care at Edge Hill University, said: “The passion of the students, and hunger to learn how to provide the best care for their patients, was amazing. The interactive nature of the course shows how they are already developing enhanced skills.”
Initial feedback suggests students are excited, enthused, well-supported and “champing at the bit” to learn new skills, said Dr Groves. As one participant put it: “I have done many master’s modules but never one quite like this!”
Dr Groves added: “Queenscourt is in its silver jubilee year. With the help and support of Edge Hill, it is creating a lasting educational legacy for its next 25 years, which will benefit the people of West Lancashire, Southport and Formby, as well as those farther afield.”