Palliative and end of life care
We work to ensure we make as much impact for people and families as possible. Through our projects we aspire that people will be supported to make decisions, manage their care, and live well until they die; care will be coordinated and planned so that people are cared for and can die well in their place of choice; and families and carers will have the opportunity to prepare for death and the bereaved will have access to practical, emotional support.
Nearly all of our nine outcomes above apply to people with palliative care needs:
care is personalised
care is coordinated
people are helped to make informed decisions and plans
carers are supported
here’s an emphasis on quality of life
The last outcome, ‘I want to die well’, is central to our end of life strategy and our vision, in support of it is:
People who are nearing the end of their life will be supported to make decisions that allow them and their family or carers to be prepared for their death. Their care will be well coordinated and planned so that they die in the place and in the way that they have chosen.
Our work mirrors the key themes identified for palliative and end of life care across the UK:
identification of people approaching the end of life and initiating discussions
coordination of care
delivery of high quality services in all locations
management of the last days of life
support for carers, both during a person’s illness and after their death
raising the profile of death and dying
Advance Care Planning: new e-learning course and video
Encouraging people to put their affairs in order, plan ahead and make choices about their future care is important, and we want to better support health and social care professionals to do this.
We’ve therefore developed a new Advance Care Planning e-learning course specifically for professionals supporting people affected by cancer, which explores:
what advance care planning is
the benefits, barriers, and their role in the process
how to start a conversation on advance care planning
the different ways a person can plan ahead
the legalities of advance care planning and how these differ across the UK.
The e-learning module aims to provide professionals across a range of roles with the tools to help them feel more confident and better equipped to support people to make advance care plans.
We’ve also produced an Advance Care Planning video which gives an overview of the Advance Care Planning process. Where appropriate, and if they find it useful, we’re asking professionals to watch this with the people they support to help introduce them to the process of advance care planning and to direct them to our nation-specific information booklet Your Life and Your Choices: Plan Ahead.
If you have any feedback on the video, please email Anne McGee.
Bereavement and Macmillan Specialist Care at Home
Macmillan Specialist Care at Home
Macmillan Specialist Care at Home is a partnership approach to providing palliative care in the community. It’s based on the successful Midhurst Macmillan Specialist Palliative Care Service which began in 2006. People cared for at the Midhurst service have fewer A&E attendances, spend less days in hospital, and are more likely to die in their preferred place of care. In Midhurst, the model has had a real impact on patients and services. An independent evaluation concluded that this improved patient and carer experience could be replicated in other areas and could even decrease the cost of care. This is currently being tested by Macmillan and partner organisations in six Innovation Centres in England.
Macmillan wants to build on its existing bereavement information and support so that as many people as possible bereaved by cancer get the support and information they need. We are aiming to do this by identifying innovative practice gaps in provision and new opportunities, to expand existing or develop new ways of providing support; understanding how Macmillan can best respond to need before and after death and making our support accessible to as many people as possible; identifying opportunities to enhance the support provided by bereaved people’s own networks and exploring how volunteers can provide sustainable bereavement solutions; and developing partnerships where this would add value to our offer.
Being at home made the situation easier for us to cope with. It was comforting to know Emile was in the place he wanted to be and surrounded by people he knew and loved.
Liz, campaign supporter.
24/7 community nursing
With the right support, 73% of people with cancer would prefer to die at home, yet only 27% actually do.
More than four in 10 (44%) Primary Care Trusts don't provide round the clock care to all patients, which is why so many people don't have a choice.
Not only would 24/7 community nursing make a difference to people with cancer, the NHS would save money too. The average cost of keeping someone in hospital for the last year of their life is £222 per day, compared to £28 per day for care at home - nearly eight times less.
We want anyone living with cancer, nearing the end of their lives, to have access to 24/7 nursing in the community, so they can die at home if they wish.
Join our campaign for 24/7 community nursing for end of life cancer patients.
Free social care at the end of life (no longer running)
We believe everyone should have the right to choose where they die. That's why we asked the government to make free social care available to everyone at the end of life. For more information on this, or any other campaign please email email@example.com.
Find out more about our campaigns.