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Trust’s outstanding end of life care recognised

A NHS trust’s outstanding work caring for the dying has been recognised by a national programme to improve palliative care.

The Department of Health has chosen Southport and Ormskirk Hospital NHS Trust as one of 10 to take part in “Building on the Best”. The programme will support improvements in patients’ quality and experience of palliative and end of life care.

The Care Quality Commission Chief Inspector of Hospitals commended the palliative care and bereavement teams for their outstanding practice in a report on the Trust last May.

Dr Karen Groves, Consultant in Palliative Medicine, said: “We’re thrilled to have been selected for Building on the Best which will allow us to build on the best practice we have developed with other trusts.

“We have a very proactive approach to end of life care which includes a seven-day-a-week service, support and education for staff, and teams that work not just in hospital but with care homes, GPs and the charity sector too.”

Dr Groves added: “Most people say they would prefer to die in the place they usually live rather than hospital. We are the best performing Trust in our network on this measure.”

Building the Best will initially roll-out in England. It is funded by Macmillan Cancer Support and is supported by a partnership between the National Council for Palliative Care, Macmillan Cancer Support, NHS England and the NHS Trust Development Authority.

As well as further developing the work of the Transforming End of Life Care in Acute Hospitals Programme, Building on the Best will develop new areas of focus for improving end of life care.

These will include making information more accessible to patients and their families, to enable more shared decision making; taking the opportunities offered by outpatient appointments to discuss advance and anticipatory care planning; improving the handover of information and records as people move between acute and secondary care; and improving pain and symptom management.

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