Scottish Partnership for Palliative Care: Update

Welcome to Update, a monthly round-up of news relevant to palliative care in Scotland, brought to you by the Scottish Partnership for Palliative Care.


Update from Scottish Government

"Palliative and End of Life Care Strategy

We are aware that this winter will be very challenging for colleagues working in front line health and social care roles due to the exceptional health challenges we face, and the resulting increased demands on their time.

Therefore, given the importance of the views of those delivering high quality palliative and end of life care services to the development of the strategy, we plan to commence work on the development of the new palliative and end of life care strategy in earnest in February 2022. However, we will continue to take forward work over the coming months to help ensure that the correct resource and structures are in place to support engagement with front line colleagues as soon as is practically possible.

Palliative and End of Life Care National Clinical Lead

Please note that recruitment for the Clinical Lead post is now live. Applications are by expression of interest and CV to Jolanta Lisicka at by closing date: midnight 7th January 2022. I would be grateful if this information could be circulated appropriately among your networks to help ensure that we reach as many potential candidates as possible."

COVID-19 Enquiry

The Scottish Government has established a public inquiry to examine the handling of the COVID-19 pandemic in Scotland. Delivery of end of life care and use of DNACPR is one of 12 areas identified for investigation.

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Enhanced Palliative Care Textbook published

Pre-orders are open for Enhanced Palliative Care, a new textbook in line with Scottish Palliative Care Guidelines and the NES Framework for Palliative and End of Life Care. The textbook provides a comprehensive overview of the principle areas encountered whilst working with adult palliative and end-of-life patients, and their families. It is aimed at anyone involved in management and prescribing within non-specialist palliative care, both in hospitals and in the community, including paramedics, nurses, doctors, pharmacists, and other key health professionals.

NES Bereavement Webinar Recordings

A recording of the latest NES Bereavement Webinar entitled Being Homeless at the End of Life has now been added to the website. Sessions are aimed at health and social care professionals.

Death Certification

Healthcare Improvement Scotland has published Deaths from COVID-19 disease in Scotland: Scenarios to support accurate death certification and reporting to Crown Office & Procurator Fiscal Service.

Sharing current Scottish Practice - SPPC blog

The SPPC Autumn Season 2021 featured an online poster exhibition of 36 posters, sharing work and research underway across Scotland. Each month, our blog focuses on the content of a few of these posters. This month, we focus on:

The SPPC blog is a space to share practice currently underway in Scotland. If you have practice you'd like to share, please get in touch.

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Public and Patient Experience

Fatherhood, bereavement and masculinity: an exploratory study of partner loss

This study by Rebecca Phipps aimed to explore the experiences of partner-bereaved fathers in the UK, to better understand how parenthood and gender influenced and were influenced by bereavement. It asked: What are the transition experiences of fathers around the death of a partner, how do gender and masculinities influence these experiences, and what are their support needs and preferences?

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Assisted Dying consultation

SPPC has responded to the consultation on proposals for an Assisted Dying for Terminally Ill Adults (Scotland) Bill. SPPC's approach to this consultation has been:

  • To take a factual and evidential approach rather than a moral or religious one
  • To educate and inform about palliative and end of life care
  • To challenge misinformation about palliative and end of life care
  • To acknowledge and give an account of complexities which tend to get lost in polarised debates
  • To be honest about the limits of palliative care to relieve all suffering
  • To be honest about the current deficiencies in care towards the end of life experienced by some people
  • To advocate for the improvement of palliative care
  • To critically review and present a view on the specific provisions of the proposed Bill, such that if the Bill is passed potential harms (to vulnerable people and the practice and provision of palliative care) are minimised.

You can download and read SPPC's response here.

Bereavement Commission Consultation

SPPC has submitted written evidence to the UK Commission on Bereavement.

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Other News

NHS Inform - public information on anticipatory care planning (ACP)

Updated ACP pages approved by Scottish Government are available on NHS Inform. The main ACP page is at: Two linked pages cover 'Decisions about CPR' and 'Talking about your Care' and there are links to more external sites including GLGDGG and ReSPECT. All NHS Inform pages can be shared or downloaded and printed using their 'Info for Me' tool

New website to support people to plan ahead

Planning Ahead: What matters to you? is a new online tool designed to help people think through what is important to them and plan ahead for future decline in health. The new tool is being launched as a work in progress, for public consultation, and the tool will be refined and developed as user feedback is received and processed user feedback.

NES Bereavement Conference - Posters

NHS Education for Scotland’s second national bereavement education conference took place on Wednesday 24th November 2021. Posters from the conference can be viewed online. Sessions from the conference have been recorded and will be available online shortly.

New Chief Executive at Ardgowan Hospice

Ardgowan Hospice is pleased to announce that Graham Gardiner has accepted the post of Chief Executive following the departure of Linda McEnhill.

New report explores grief in later life

Independent Age has published Grief Encounters: Experiences of bereavement in later life, a report exploring experiences of grief in older people and what can be done to make improvements.

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Save the Date - SPPC Annual Conference 2022

We are planning the return of the (face to face) SPPC Annual Conference for Thursday 31st March 2022. A lot can happen before then, but for now we are looking forward to welcoming you back in person to the Royal College of Physicians of Edinburgh.

Webinar on Last Aid and Public Palliative Care Education

The EAPC Task Force on Last Aid is organising a webinar on 13 January 2022. More information will be available soon: weblink.

Supporting primary care teams to talk and be with people who are bereaved or experiencing living grief

Organised by NHS Education Scotland, online. 26 January 2022, 5pm. More information is available here: weblink.

Delirium prevention, assessment and effective management

Organised by Healthcare Conferences UK. Online. 9 February 2022. More information is available here: weblink.

Effective non medical prescribing in end of life care

Organised by Healthcare Conferences UK. Online. 9 February 2022. More information is available here: weblink.

Improving end of life care for people with dementia during Covid-19

Organised by Healthcare Conferences UK. Online. On demand. More information is available here: weblink.

UK Launch of Lancet Commission on the Value of Death

1 March 2022, London or online. More information is available here: weblink

Advanced European bioethics course “Suffering, Death and Palliative Care”

Organised by Healthcare Ethics, IQ healthcare, Radboud University Medical centre. Nijmegen, the Netherlands, 22-25 March 2022. More information is available here: weblink.

7th Public Health Palliative Care International Conference

Organised by PHPCI. 20-22 September 2022, Bruge, Belgium. More information is available here: weblink.

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