“ACP is not for me!”

paul baughan

“I don’t have time to do an ACP.”
“That document is too big.”
“GPs have enough work without this.”
“Someone else should be doing it.”

These are all comments which I have heard my GP colleagues say when the topic of Anticipatory Care Planning comes up. And if I’m honest, there have been occasions when similar thoughts have gone through my head. But Anticipatory Care Planning is so much more than any document or the needs of a particular professional group, and I have come to realise that it is a fundamental component of our work in general practice.

Some of the most rewarding consultations I have had, started with an exploration of ‘what matters most‘ to someone. Recognition of such priorities enables the most effective use to be made of limited consultation time. And often I am surprised that the most important aspect of someone’s care is not what I thought it was going to be.

Take for instance my patient John, who has significant heart disease and was frustrated about the poor control of his blood pressure. I could see John’s irritation and was determined to find a new combination of drugs that would work better than the last.  Each switch to a different medication required more blood tests and close monitoring, and unfortunately many of these new drugs made John feel dizzy and light-headed.

One day John told me that his greatest pleasure in life was spending time with his grandchildren, and until recently he would drive them to and from school each day.   Side effects from his medication were preventing this, which in turn caused John to feel stressed. Only by understanding his priorities were we able to make progress.  He was willing to accept the risk of a slightly higher blood pressure if it meant he could safely drive his grandchildren and ‘feel useful’.

So, after discussion we stopped his medication, put the BP monitor to the side, and instead explored other aspects of his future care which were important to him. His Key Information Summary was updated to include his thoughts about cardiopulmonary resuscitation and he set about appointing a welfare power of attorney. John was able to start driving again and his levels of frustration reduced, as did his blood pressure!

ACP desktopAnticipatory Care Planning is not a one-off event. It is a process that starts with a conversation and which can develop and evolve over time. The beauty of general practice is that we have opportunities to initiate that conversation and contribute to the development of an ACP over weeks, months and sometimes years.

Professionals working in other parts of health or social care can also make a big contribution to ACP. Tools such as My ACP can support this process, and stimulate helpful discussions within families.  There is still a challenge translating information from hospital clinic letters and My ACP onto the KIS. I welcome recent progress with the new national digital platform, which in time will allow a wider group of people to contribute to an electronic shared ACP.

So, ACP is not just for me. It is for all professional groups working across health and social care, and most importantly it is for the person, their family and carers.

Paul Baughan, GP, Dollar Health Centre, Clackmannanshire

For more information and resources relating to ACP visit the ACP toolkit.

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What works in care co-ordination in palliative and end of life care

PEOLC evidence bundle coverWe have recently published a resource that reviews the evidence on continuity and care coordination in palliative and end of life care. This blog post gives an overview of the document and its features.

Why focus on care coordination?

Good care co-ordination can help to improve people’s quality of life, right up to the end of life.

The Living Well in Communities team has been working with test sites in Dundee, East Ayrshire, Fife, Glasgow City, and Renfrewshire Health and Social Care Partnerships to deliver Commitment 1 from the Scottish Government’s Strategic Framework for Action on Palliative and End of Life Care:

We will support Healthcare Improvement Scotland in providing Health and Social Care Partnerships with expertise in testing and implementing improvements to identify those who can benefit from palliative and end of life care and in the co-ordination of their care.”

This work is coming to a close in March 2019.

Exploring the evidence on different approaches

Drawing on the priority practices outlined in the World Health Organization practice brief on continuity and co-ordination of care, we identified six key approaches to continuity and care co-ordination in palliative and end of life care:

  • Early integrated palliative care
  • Collaborative planning of care and shared decision making
  • Case management for people with palliative and end of life care needs
  • Intermediate palliative care at home
  • Technology to support continuity and care coordination
  • Building workforce capacity

Working with the Evidence and Evaluation for Improvement Team, we summarised the available systematic-review level evidence on these approaches.

Presenting the evidence visually

As with our Living Well in Communities with Frailty evidence review, we produced visual summaries for each of the approaches. These provide key information on the different approaches to care coordination, and an introduction to the more detailed evidence summaries. The visual summaries include

  • a brief description of each approach,
  • the rationale behind them,
  • the potential benefits,
  • enablers,
  • brief commentary on the quality of the evidence, and
  • links to further reading and examples of local good practice.

 

Visual summary
Early integrated palliative care visual summary
Case mgmt summary
Case management evidence summary

 

We hope that this document will provide a useful overview of the systematic review-level evidence on key approaches to care co-ordination in palliative and end of life care, and highlight the potential benefits of these approaches.

You can access the review, Continuity and Co-ordination in Palliative and End of Life Care: evidence for what works by clicking on the document image below:

PEOLC evidence bundle cover

 

Care Co-ordination Short Stories

A number of Palliative Care professionals who attended our Palliative and End of Life Care Delivery Group on 8th November kindly shared some insights into how to better understand care co-ordination. You can find out more by looking at the slides from the day here.

Sandra Campbell (National Clinical Lead) presented on the importance of timely, sandrasensitive conversations. Conversations should begin at the point of need by whoever is identifying the need / transition. The Palliative Care Identification Tools Comparator can be used to allow people to make more informed choices about their care and treatments when they have an irreversible illness. Significant conversations happen at the right time, in the right place with the right person.
deans.jpgDeans Buchanan (Consultant in Palliative Medicine, Lead Clinician) spoke about Health Transitions in Human Stories. Stories are very important to how we understand and communicate with one another. Most patients’ stories will have been interrupted by their illness and this can affect their response to treatment. The A, B, C, and D approach of dignity conserving care (Attitude, Behaviour, Compassion and Dialogue) is one method being tested to remind practitioners about the importance of caring for their patient.

Heather Edwards (Dementia Consultant, Care Inspectorate) gave a good overview of Bereavement. Heather highlighted the importance of preparation for death and the value of the care home staff in supporting families. Bereavement can cause an emotional toll on the staff as well as families but it’s important that we also support them as they are also grieving having developed relationships with the residents and their families.

Lynne Carmichael (Respite & Response Team Manager, Ayrshire Hospice) presented on carers and the Carers Support Needs Assessment Tool (CSNAT). One of the first barriers is many carers do not recognise themselves as a carer and often put their own needs to the side to care for a loved one. The CSNAT tool helps provide support for family members and carers of those with a life limiting condition.

lynne

Jo Hockley (RN PhD, Usher Institute, University of Edinburgh) presented on Care Co-joordination and Care Homes. As the population of over 80’s increases, they are becoming increasingly frail and more dependent, resulting in increased pressures on healthcare professionals supporting care homes. The main issues are:

– Lack of recognising the dying
– Lack of healthcare support to palliative care
– Lack of support staff

More work will need to be done around linking care homes into the system. This will hopefully be aided by a similar study to the Teaching Nursing Home pilot whereby the public/professional perception of care homes change, encouraging a career pathway in care homes for health and social care professionals, to help increase the workforce and establish more community engagement in care of frail older people.

marie cureRichard Meade (Head of Policy and Public Affairs, Marie Curie Scotland) offered an insight in Looking Beyond 2021 and thinking about the future. As the population is living longer, more people will be diagnosed with multi-morbidities, including dementia, frailty and cancer, and will therefore require increased palliative care. This in turn will increase the pressures on every care setting, the workforce, resources and the way we deliver care, and we must act now.

Anne Finnucane (Research Lead, Marie Curie Hospice Edinburgh) presented on the Key anneInformation Summary (KIS) and a recent study undertaken on those who died with an advanced progressive condition in 2017 with a KIS in place. A KIS is a shared electronic clinical summary used to guide urgent care in the community and emergency hospital admission. It helps to communicate key elements and preferences from the person’s Anticipatory Care Plan (ACP) to help with future care needs.

 

AliAli Guthrie (Learning & Development Advisor) discussed Personal Outcomes: towards a Shared Understanding. A Personal outcomes approach is focusing on what is important to people in their lives. They often relate to maintaining or improving wellbeing and feature in the National Health and Wellbeing Outcomes in the new Health and Social Care Standards.

 

For further information, please contact a member of our team at hcis.livingwell@nhs.net

Follow us on Twitter:@LWIC_QI, @turnersara99 @paulbaughan, @sandracampbellc65402031

Understanding the success factors in Care Co-ordination

Our local Palliative & End of Life Care (PEOLC) test partners came together on 8th November 2018 to exchange knowledge and understand the success factors for care co-ordination. The morning session provided an opportunity for the five health and social care partnership test sites to share the improvements in care co-ordination that they have been taking forward locally. Each site has approached this challenge in a different way, working with different population groups, in different settings and with a variety of different interventions.  However, the objective to improve the co-ordination of palliative and end of life care remains consistent across each area, with promising early outcomes now emerging from this work.

map

 

Test Sites

We have five main test sites involved in identifying those who would benefit from a palliative care approach:

  • Dundee
  • Fife
  • East Ayrshire
  • Renfrewshire
  • Glasgow

 

Experts from Marie Curie, Ayrshire Hospice, Care Inspectorate, University of Edinburgh and The Scottish Social Services Council (SSSC) were on hand to provide short stories and share current thinking to help with our understanding of Care co-ordination.

whos here today

 

The afternoon was a World Café format – a world café is a simple, effective and flexible format for hosting large group dialogue. It provides an opportunity to exchange and share knowledge. Test site leads led the table discussion and answer any questions in relation to their site and Care Co-ordination.

world caFE

Evaluation Comments

“This was a great day, what an opportunity to have a day with space to network, think and create for the future”

“Everyone’s opinion counted”

“Open environment to discuss palliative care with professionals in different areas”

“Rich conversations”

“Great opportunities to learn what is happening and being developed across Scotland and a chance to network and share ideas”

“Really valuable sharing and networking; very much stimulated ideas for us to test”

“Group discussions, listening to different ideas and realising that we are all wishing and working for the same outcome”

 

Key to good care co-ordination in PEOLC

Attendees tested out Mentimeter, a fun and interactive tool for presentations, to create a word cloud describing the key to good care co-ordination:

mentimeter

Closing comments from Paul and Sandra

Paul Baughan and Sandra Campbell (National Clinical Leads) provided some words from the day:

“There are many different components to good co-ordination of care at the end of life.   This gathering allowed those testing new ways of working to meet and share their progress with like-minded individuals and experts in the field of palliative care.  This knowledge exchange is mutually beneficial and has provided a renewed impetus for our five test sites to make progress with their change ideas.”

“It was an excellent day, with really engaging conversations and sharing of best practice… and great to hear about such good work across the country.”

Next Steps

Paul and Sandra are currently working on an evidence bundle for Care Co-ordination alongside the Evidence and Evaluation for Improvement Team (EEvIT), the first draft will be ready at the end of January. The evidence bundle will inform which interventions help people to die in their preferred place of death, which interventions help to decrease the percentage of hospital deaths, and the interventions that increase the percentage of deaths at home and in hospices.

 

For further information, please contact a member of our team at hcis.livingwell@nhs.net

Follow us on Twitter:@LWIC_QI, @turnersara99, @paulbaughan, @sandracampbellc65402031

Neighbourhood Care Steering Group

cropped-20180531-lwic-header.jpg

Our recent Neighbourhood Care Steering Group took place on 21st November at The Studio, Glasgow. This session focused on measurement and provided an opportunity for our test sites to update each other on their progress and any challenges encountered since our last meeting.

NC pic 1

Care Experience Measurement

Our public partners, recently attended training on Care Experience, delivered by the Person Centred Care team in the hope that each public partner will link up with an active test site and assist them in capturing care experience in their local area. A further training session will happen in the New Year and those from the HSCP pilot sites are welcome to attend.

The group was shown an example of a “Care Experience Map” and asked if this would be helpful in developing one for each active site, with 1 or 2 patients being interviewed (Aberdeen City, Scottish Borders and NHS Highland). The Care Experience Maps would be used to capture the current care received from Neighbourhood Care teams, and could highlight opportunities for quality improvement work for local teams.

Knowledge Hub

The Steering Group have previously expressed that they would like to have a platform to share information around Neighbourhood Care in between the Steering Group meetings. As a result, the Living Well in Communities (LWIC) team have created a Knowledge Hub site. It provides a chance for those interested in testing similar models to network and share ideas and will be open to all roles in all areas.

The LWiC team had brain stormed these folders and suggested some sub folders, as well as uploading a few examples of documents that sites may find useful to share. Everyone was invited to “test” out the page and offer suggestions that would help improve the page before it gets shared more widely with local test site teams. Sites were asked to feedback their suggestions to the LWiC team and nominate a member of their team as ‘administrator’ who will be responsible for updating and uploading documents to their site’s folder.

Measurement

A small NC Measurement sub-group formed on the back of the last Steering Group and met to develop a set of common measures for all sites based on the 7 common themes of measurement:

  • Re-ablement
  • Customer satisfaction/experience
  • Staff satisfaction
  • Procedures
  • Workforce
  • Professional Autonomy
  • Community impact

The steering group was briefed on the 10 suggested measures and asked if they would be both useful and easy for Neighbourhood Care teams to measure. Some of the measures included:

“The percentage of time spent by nurses and carers that:

 is directly person facing time or Involves person centred activities”

“The average number of team/staff members visiting each person per day/per week”

“The percentage of attendees who join the regular team meetings that discuss and plan care/case load”

“Number of steps in a process that require approval to be sought [before a  neighbourhood care team/control group and with a neighbourhood care team”? I.e. “How many barriers removed?”

All suggestions were useful and would be of particular interest to team members, but some may prove challenging to capture. Neighbourhood Care Test Sites will now test ways to capture some of these measures and have been asked to help define them more precisely.

For any further information on any of the above, please feel free to contact one of the team:

hcis.livingwell@nhs.net 

Neighbourhood Care Steering Group, 3rd October – Challenges and Support

On the 3rd October we held our latest Neighbourhood Care Steering Group at the Edinburgh Training & Conference Venue. There was great representation from the Neighbourhood Care test sites [including Western Isles, NHS Highland, Aberdeen City, Scottish Borders, Stirling & Clacks and Cornerstone] as well as national supportive partners [Scottish Government, Buurtzorg Britain & Ireland, SSSC, Care Inspectorate and NES].

The aim of the day was to openly discuss the challenges and support that National Partners and test sites can offer each other.

1

Defining our Measures

Thomas Monaghan (HIS) and Fee Hodgkiss (Scottish Government) revisited the vision set out in 2016 for Neighbourhood Care, in a letter from Scottish Government. Both discussed whether the principles are still relevant today, and what they mean in a Scottish context. They offered the opinion that as a set of principles, they were solid and aligned with the pillars of providing person-centred, ‘good, old-fashioned’ care. The group agreed that the principles still applied in a Scottish context and there was a general consensus that the principle of person-centred care was most important.

Logic Model-Measurement Mapping

The group were led through a cross mapping exercise carried out by the ihub team that links the original desired outcomes and impact of the programme’s logic model with the current measures being undertaken in local test sites.

The measures were themed into six categories:

  • Re-ablement
  • Person satisfaction/experience
  • Staff satisfaction
  • Procedural tasks
  • Workforce structure
  • Professional autonomy/self-management

3

The exercise highlighted that there may be areas of measurement that were not currently being recorded. Key to this part of the morning was to facilitate agreement on potential measures for Neighbourhood Care Teams at a national level, and the group discussed this and what measures could potentially ‘fill the gaps’ if necessary.

There was consensus within the group that the themes were good. The group also highlighted the need for “Third Sector/communities capacity building contribution” to be added as a 7th theme for measurement.

The group agreed that further discussion focussing on the measures within the document would be of benefit, and a small sub-group will be formed to carry this out. This group will meet and develop a set of common measures for all sites based on these (now seven) highlighted themes before the next steering group in November. If you have any suggestions, please get in touch with your local lead or contact hcis.livingwell@nhs.net

Challenges and Support

The group was asked to reflect on the nine common themes of challenges that sites were reporting and were asked to consider opportunities for peer support and/or offers of support from national partners.

4

 

The group selected three themes and spent the remainder of the afternoon discussing these:

Number 4: Ability to empower teams to be self-managing

Number 2: Competing Priorities and Communicating

Number 7: Lack of platform / regular reporting structure

“Self-organising” came up as a key challenge being faced by the test sites.  The group agreed there is potential for some rich learning that could be shared from Buurtzorg Britain and Ireland and Cornerstone’s approach and experience with this.

HIS will work alongside Britain Buurtzorg and Ireland and Cornerstone to develop a series of recorded WebExes that will provide further information on this (and other fundamental topics) and will share these on our website. Watch out for a programme of dates for these, which we’ll communicate soon.

Care Experience Tool

In order to support sites to measure ‘experience’ (versus satisfaction) a Care Experience Tool (developed in collaboration between the LWiC and Evidence and Indicators team within HIS) was shared in a draft form. The tool is a set of open questions that aim to explore compassionate care, and are directly related to the new Health and Social Care Standards. Aberdeen City, Stirling and Clackmannanshire and Cornerstone were interested in testing out the tool. It’s great that our public partners have agreed to support sites with this work.

The group also discussed the practical use of the tool and further training and development dates will be planned.

Having a platform for regular sharing/reporting

The Steering Group expressed that having the opportunity to meet, chat and share ideas, knowledge and offers of support is always extremely valuable. Steering groups only happen every 6-8 weeks, so the LWiC team agreed to set up a webpage for the group on the Knowledge Hub. This will be a platform for sites to share information around Neighbourhood Care in between meetings and will be open to all roles in all areas. We look forward to sharing more details around this in the future.

For any further information on any of the above, please feel free to contact one of the team:

hcis.livingwell@nhs.net

 

 

Neighbourhood Care Steering Group – 22 August Blog

On the 22nd August the newly formed Steering Group met for the first time.

The steering group combines the Delivery Group (members of national organisations that support the Neighbourhood Care programme) with the Learning Network (project leads from the health and social care organisations that are testing the Neighbourhood Care principles (inspired by Buurtzorg). The steering group will meet every six to eight weeks and work in a Break Through Series Collaborative. By working in this way it’s hoped that there will be more opportunities for closer working, easier sharing and increased opportunities for support.

The 22nd was an opportunity for all members of the Steering Group to share their current progress, challenges and support required. You can read more about the day’s activities in our flash report. Please feel free to share this with your teams.

Nc pic

Our next Steering Group meeting is on 3rd October. Between now and then the LWiC team and National Partners will have met to discuss how best to plan the support that is required in order to assist local teams to develop their own local models of care to deliver the principles. This will be discussed further with the Steering Group on 3rd October.

Scottish Borders HSCP, Aberdeen City HSCP, Argyll & Bute HSCP and NHS Highland have live case loads and so will continue to be supported by Buurtzorg Britain and Ireland (previously Public World) and a plan of training events has been developed from now until the end of the year that is tailored to their needs.

As well as the Steering Group, the Scottish Social Services Council (SSSC) are supporting 10 individuals (including representation from HIS, Scottish Government, Care Inspectorate and Cornerstone) from the steering group in Action Learning Sets (ALS). ALS are a structured method of supportive coaching that helps the participants deliver outcomes that are important to them and the overall aim of the programme.

At the last steering group meeting test sites shared their current/planned measures that they will use to evidence their team’s improvements and outcomes. The LWiC team has collated this information and cross-mapped the measures to the original outcome framework/logic model. The next steering group meeting will provide an opportunity to discuss and define these measures in more detail, as well as discussing why sites have chosen these specific measures and whether there is an opportunity to develop a common set of measures between all sites.

We look forward to keeping you further informed after the next steering group meeting J

Follow us on Twitter: @LWIC_QI, @mratgmurray, @turnersara99

 

 

Reflecting on our palliative care work: thoughts from Sandra Campbell

 

Sandra presenting
Sandra presenting at our recent learning event on identification.

Our Nursing National Clinical Lead for Palliative and End of Life Care, Sandra Campbell, reflects on a year of supporting the Living Well in Communities palliative care work.

What a year! I have loved every minute! Unfortunately the secondment is only one day a week, but fortunately I am able to be flexible with time. I am certainly very grateful to my line manager in my substantive post as Nurse Consultant for Cancer and Palliative Care in NHS Forth Valley for that.

The main purpose of the clinical lead role is to support the Living Well in Communities Team within the ihub at Healthcare Improvement Scotland to deliver on Commitment 1 of the Strategic Framework for Action on Palliative and End of Life Care 2016-2021:

  • Identification of need
  • Coordination of care

The programme has six test sites across Scotland: Dundee, Glasgow City, Perth and Kinross, East Ayrshire, Fife, Western Isles, and Renfrewshire.

Reflecting back to April 2017, it was hard to imagine how these individual projects would evolve, but it has been amazing to see them unfold due to excellent local leadership within each of the Health and Social Care Partnerships, the guidance and support of assistance improvement advisors in each area and the support of the Living Well in Communities team.

Dr Paul Baughan and I, as clinical leads, have supported from a clinical advisory aspect. A Palliative Care Identification Tools Comparator resource has been developed and is available to support teams in understanding the various tools that can support the identification of palliative care. Paul has supported two webex education sessions, and I will be delivering a webex on the key principles in Caring for People in the Last Days of Life and how this relates to coordination of care.

The test sites will test some of these tools, which will inform wider learning across Scotland. This work will be developed further to inform a resource for care staff in care homes on how and when to use particular tools at different trigger points. Three events will share this learning: the first of which took place on the 31st May (and really saw the Strategic Framework for Action for Palliative and End of Life Care come to life) and a further two are planned for October 2018 and March 2019.

All of the work fits perfectly with the agenda in Realising Realistic Medicine, supporting anticipatory care planning that ultimately enables the right thing to be done at the right time, by the right person, to the right quality standard, with the right outcome.

What is needed is:

  • Good assessment and care planning
  • Good decision making
  • Good care
  • Good quality of life until death
  • Good death
  • Good bereavement

The opportunity for the test sites on the project is to try out different ways of working to improve care and make best use of resources available. Enhancing the generalist support is vital if we are to ensure as many people as possible can remain in their own homes as long as possible.

Other developments

New guidance to support Confirmation (previously verification) of Death will be available shortly from the Scottish Government.

Macmillan has supported projects within the test sites with funding of £120,000.

Macmillan and the Scottish Ambulance Service are in early conversations about developing a national project to improve end of life care and prevent inappropriate admission to hospital and reduce inappropriate CPR.

A key aspect of the clinical lead role is to engage with other stakeholders and we do this on an ongoing basis. People and organisations we have engaged with include:

I have also set up a nurse leads group – now reporting to the Scottish Government, SEND and SPPC. We have a practical work plan that includes bereavement. This group is about sharing best practice across all areas. Standardising care at end of life is helpful to teams and welcomed in the absence of a framework such as the Liverpool Care Pathway.

In caring for the dying patients and those close to them, it is important that staff provide care in accordance with the key principles, which I discussed in an earlier blog post.

You can follow Sandra on Twitter and contact her at 

sandra.campbell2@nhs.net

The community-based interventions that can make a difference for people with frailty

Cover image

We have recently published a resource that summarises the evidence for different community-based frailty interventions. This blog post gives an overview of the document and its features.

Why focus on frailty?

A person with frailty can experience serious adverse consequences following even a relatively minor illness. Its impact can be very significant in terms of consequent disability or admission to a nursing home.

If frailty is identified at an early stage and individuals are targeted with evidence-based interventions that can manage frailty, or reverse it, this can improve people’s quality of life and wellbeing. This reduces the likelihood that they will need to access unplanned services due to a crisis, which, in turn, reduces the use of expensive, unscheduled care.

The community-based interventions that can make a difference

The literature on frailty is vast. For the purposes of our resource we focused on interventions in frailty that are community-based, focused on the prevention of harms or poor outcomes, and supported by relatively high-level evidence. The Evidence and Evaluation for Improvement Team carried out literature searches and produced evidence summaries for the following topics:

  • Exercise interventions and physical activity
  • Polypharmacy review
  • Immunisation
  • Primary care interventions
  • Community geriatric services
  • Lifestyle factors: physical activity diet, obesity, smoking alcohol and their relation to frailty
  • Nutritional interventions for the prevention and treatment of frailty
  • Hospital at home: admission prevention and early discharge
  • Reablement (including rehabilitation)
  • Bed-based intermediate care
  • Anticipatory care planning

Making the evidence accessible

We then created visual abstracts for each topic, which allow readers to compare the different interventions at a glance, and provide a route into the more detailed evidence summaries and further reading. The visual abstracts include information on the potential benefits of each intervention, evidence quality, costs, and frailty level:

Reablement visual abstract
Reablement visual abstract
Reablement summary
Reablement evidence summary

 

We hope that this document will help Health and Social Care Partnerships to compare different interventions for frailty and the evidence behind them, and to consider which interventions could make a difference for people with frailty in their local areas.

You can access the report, Living Well in Communities with Frailty: evidence for what works by clicking on the document image below:

Cover image

Palliative and End of Life Care: Focus on Identification

Michelle Church, Improvement Advisor, reflects on our recent learning event, which explored ways of identifying people who could benefit from a palliative approach to their care.

On 31st May 2018, test site participants from six health and social care partnerships (HSCPs) and key delivery partners across Scotland joined the Living Well in Communities team to learn and share knowledge about tools that can support identification of people who could benefit from a palliative approach to their care.

Making the case for early identification

Kirsty Boyd, consultant and lecturer in Palliative Medicine, talked about the many benefits of earlier identification:

  • Helps people say what matters to them.
  • Increases the opportunity for people to participate in decision-making.
  • Reduces the risk of later regrets and poor outcomes.
  • Gives people time for planning ahead, resulting in fewer crises.
  • Reduces unplanned admissions of low benefit.
  • Encourages medication review and treatment planning.
  • Improves continuity and coordination of care by sharing information.

 How can we do earlier identification?

Our national clinical leads, Dr Paul Baughan and Sandra Campbell, gave an overview of the visual resource the LWiC team have developed to help compare different identification tools that are currently used in Scotland. Sandra did a before and after survey of how aware and confident participants were about the variety of tools.

How did we mobilise knowledge?

Experts from across the UK shared their tools, knowledge and experience of doing identification. People got the chance to participate in interactive workshops looking at the tools that a number of palliative care test sites. Some insights from the sessions are included below:

Anticipal and eFI electronic tools

FAST and PPP tools

PPS and SPAR Tools

SPICT4ALL and carers identification

What did people think of the event?

People felt that they had learnt about why, when and how to use different tools to support identification and inform practice. People really liked that they had the chance to network with experts and colleagues.

Overwhelmingly, the take home message was that earlier identification and communication is key to supporting those who would benefit from a palliative approach to their care.

What did you likeTake home message

What next?

HSCP palliative care test sites are now using the comparator to consider what tools will benefit local people and services and how people identified can be supported. This work will contribute to the vision that by 2021 everyone who could benefit from palliative care will have access to it and will support the Realistic Medicine ambition of shared decision-making and a personalised approach to care.