Dr Bee Wee representing the APM in discussions on the LCP and care of those who are dying.
The APM was invited to join the ministerial roundtable meeting on Monday 26th November 2012. Following the meeting, the Department of Health has issued the following statement:
Care and Support Minister, Norman Lamb said:
"Care for the dying is an emotive issue and is never an easy subject to discuss. I am grateful to those who attended the roundtable and shared their views and experiences with me this afternoon. It is clear that everyone wants their loved ones' final hours of life to be as pain free and dignified as possible, and the Liverpool Care Pathway is an important part of achieving this aim. However as we have seen, there have been too many cases where patients were put on the Pathway without a proper explanation or their families being involved. This is simply unacceptable.
Today I have committed to appoint an independent chair to review how end of life care is working and oversee the reviews into the LCP. They will report back to me in the New Year. This review will also consider the value of locally set incentives, and whether they are leading to bad decisions or practice. It is vitally important that everyone can be confident in the findings of this work – and that we learn lessons where they are needed, so we can ensure that end of life care is as good as it can be."
The review that the Minister refers to consists of the pieces of work that are already underway, one of which is being led by the APM: a survey of professionals’ experience and views on integrated care pathways for the last days to hours of life. This will report to the independent chair, to be appointed by the Minister. We will be sending this survey out to you (and other professionals) in the next week or so.
The panel discussion on BBC Newsnight ( http://www.bbc.co.uk/iplayer/episode/b01p458b/Newsnight_26_11_2012/) broadened from a discussion about the LCP to the wider issue of talking about death and preparing for it. We were able to emphasise the importance of communication and training in all aspects of caring for dying people. These continue to be crucial requirements, not only in relation to the LCP.
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