End of life care strategy

The RCGP Northern Ireland End of Life Care Working Group aims to consider the delivery and implementation of the Royal College of General Practitioners guidelines on End of Life Care, in consideration with the Department of Health (NI) Palliative and End of Life Care Strategy. They aim to have a key role in defining the priorities and way forward for Northern Ireland.

A need has been identified to improve the collection, availability, and reliability of clinical information associated with patients approaching the end of life, irrespective of diagnosis, particularly at the interfaces between community and hospital care.

Working in close collaboration with a wide range of clinicians, agencies and patient representatives committed to improving Patient Care, the College has been tasked with the responsibility of facilitating this collaborative and inclusive process through the successful development and delivery of the RCGP Northern Ireland Patient Care Passport programme.

After a successful funding application to the Public Health Agency (PHA), financial support for the End of Life Care Working Group was approved in relation to development of a Patient Care Passport. This funding covered the costs associated with a two year project which began in September 2011. After a successful recruitment process in December 2011, a Clinical Lead Dr Ainé Abbott was appointed to the Group in January 2012.

The End of Life Care working group led by Professor Max Watson in conjunction with Dr Ainé Abbott and a host of GPs, charities, clinicians, health and other organisations and individuals are approaching the end of the development of 'What I need you to Know: A Health and Care record for me my family and carers' also known as 'My Healthcare Passport'. The project, is now due to finish in January 2014 after a slight extension.

To find out more about the End of Life Care Working Group, their progress to date and the work that has been undertaken in the past two years please contact Laura Orr at laura.orr@rcgp.org.uk or telephone 020 3188 7722.

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