The Irish Hospice Foundation (IHF) has today (14TH November ) announced that it has signed a Collaborative Agreement with the Health Service Executive (HSE) to cover cooperation on joint projects to improve the palliative and end-of-life care services in Ireland.
The Agreement is between the IHF and the Acute Hospitals Division of the HSE and aims to deliver maximum benefits to those accessing palliative care services, avoid unnecessary duplication and maximise opportunities for cross sector working.
The IHF is currently collaborating with the HSE in the following areas:
- National End-of-Life Audit and Review System
- Review of Palliative Care for All
- Palliative Care Support Bed (Level II bed) review
- Primary Care
- Development of Palliative Care Work programme
- Advance care planning
- Children’s palliative care
- Hospice Friendly Hospitals (HFH)
- Addressing gaps in service provision
Sharon Foley, CEO of the IHF, commented: “We are delighted to have signed a Collaborative Agreement with the HSE and will work together in the best interests of patients at end of life and their families. We will establish mechanisms to facilitate regular communications and education. The signing of this agreement does not affect the IHF’s ability to continue to vigorously advocate with the HSE or the Government for the improvement of services.”
Areas for potential development over the coming year will include the expansion of the HFH programme into community hospitals as well as the development of palliative care and dementia.
Ian Carter, Director of Acute Hospitals, HSE added “Patients nearing end of life may be cared for in hospices and in their own homes. However many people also die in our acute hospitals and there are specialist palliative care teams which provide services to both in-patients and out-patients. The HSE is fully committed to ensuring that we maintain and indeed improve on palliative care services and will do so through funding and working in close partnership with organisations such as the Irish Hospice Foundation.”