COVID-19 crisis highlights need for improvement in end-of-life care

Policy entry in dictionary

Responding to the CQC report Protect, respect, connect – decisions about living and dying well during COVID-19, Danny Mortimer, chief executive of the NHS Confederation, said: “This report reflects a time when pressures from COVID-19 were extremely high. As it acknowledges, where procedures and working cultures were strong, they remained strong. Where there were weaknesses, COVID-19 has highlighted the need for improvement.

 

“While it is encouraging that the CQC’s review did not find widespread evidence of blanket use of DNACPR, our members will take these findings very seriously. The report is clear on the need to make sure advance care planning is personalised and understandable to every patient.

“Our members are committed to providing the best end-of-life care possible, and improved approaches are being developed. We would highlight practices such as the Recommended Summary Plan for Emergency Care and Treatment, which creates a summary of personalised recommendations for clinical care in a future emergency in which patients do not have capacity to make or express choices.

“In our responses to the CQC’s consultation on its new strategy, we supported the proposed move towards a strong safety culture with a focus on learning and improvement. This report makes a strong case for clear, consistent standards, translated into similarly consistent local practice. This is clearly something that members will want to reflect carefully on and will remain a key area of inquiry for the CQC."

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