End of life care: why it is essential to coordinate care

What is the video about?

Effective co-ordination of a range of services is a crucial aspect of care for people moving towards the end of life, but achieving it can be difficult. End of life care often involves a number of health and social care services and if these fail to work together successfully, the result is likely to be an unsatisfactory standard of care and distress for the person and their family.  This film looks at an innovative pilot scheme run by the South of Tyne and Wear Palliative Care Coordinating Centre from Marie Curie’s Newcastle Hospice. The Centre offers people at the end of life a coordinated care package and keeps everyone involved in their care fully informed of the person’s changing health and social care needs. So far the results of the scheme are promising and there are plans to extend it to other parts of the country.

Messages for practice

  1. It is vitally important to keep the person who is dying at the heart of communication between health and social care services.
  2. Social care can be overlooked when medical care takes preference.
  3. People at the end of life who do not have family and friends to support them are particularly vulnerable to receiving poorly coordinated care.
  4. Clarity about coordination – who is responsible for doing what – creates an environment of trust and security around the person who is dying.
  5. Having a single point of contact for the person who is at the end of life helps to coordinate care packages and communication.

Who will find this useful?

Health and social care commissioners; personal care providers; GPs and community nurses; health and social care providers; users and carers; social workers; health and social care policy leads.