Hospice Friendly Hospitals Programme
Almost 30,000 people die in Ireland each year. While a majority would like to die at home, the reality is that at least half of all deaths (48%) occur in acute hospitals, and 20% take place in long-stay care facilities such as nursing homes. Only 4% of deaths occur in hospices.
Although so many people die in hospitals, until quite recently end-of-life care was not seen as a core activity of these institutions. To address the issues arising for patients and their families, the Hospice Friendly Hospitals Programme was launched in 2007, with the aim of developing and promoting a culture of care for those facing death in hospitals that would draw on the principles of hospice care.
The overall purpose of the Programme is to ensure that end-of-life care is central to the mission and everyday business of healthcare sites. It promotes high quality care for all people at the end of life regardless of diagnosis and whether the death is expected or sudden and it acknowledges the role of clinical, administrative and support staff in improving the patient’s and family’s experience.
Aims of the Hospice Friendly Hospitals Programme
- To develop the capacity of acute and residential care settings to meet the Quality Standards for End-of-Life Care in Hospitals
- To improve the culture in hospitals & residential care settings in relation to all aspects of dying, death and bereavement
What we do
- We develop and provide staff development programmes such as Final Journeys, Dealing with Bad News and What Matters to Me
- We develop end of life care audit tools and support healthcare sites to implement standards
- We produce end of life care resources and publications
- We support Networks of Hospice Friendly Hospitals around Ireland for acute hospitals, maternity hospitals/units and community hospitals
- We operate a Design & Dignity Project in partnership with the HSE