More should be done to give patients and carers choice about end of life care, according to a report by the King’s Fund.
Implementing the End of Life Care Strategy warns of the danger of losing momentum in improving palliative care as a government review into the service will not take place until 2013.
It also says “lack of choice in end of life care is frequently due to inadequate service design, poor co-ordination of care at a local level, lack of communication between healthcare professionals, and inadequate support for carers”.
The report argues “significant progress can be made by rolling out existing good practice and adapting it to local contexts, and that the public spending squeeze need not stand in the way of further improvements to end of life care”.
It used Marie Curie Cancer Care’s “delivering choice” programmes to find examples of good practice.
Marie Curie Cancer Care director of research and innovation Steve Dewar said: “Much more needs to be done to provide equitable access to, and provision of, high quality end of life and palliative care to people all across the UK.”