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.


APM survey on potential impact of proposed Assisted Dying for Terminally Ill Adults (Scotland) Bill

The Association for Palliative Medicine of Great Britain and Ireland surveyed palliative care doctors working in Scotland in 2022 for their views on assisted dying. The survey has shown that most would refuse to participate in assisted dying if it were legalised and believe that the introduction of assisted dying would have an overwhelmingly negative impact on the care of patients with life-limiting illnesses.

Read more here.

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Sharing current Scottish Practice

The SPPC Autumn Season 2022 featured an online poster exhibition of 55 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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Demystifying Death Week

Demystifying Death Week will take place 1-7 May 2023 and is about shining a light on death, dying and bereavement in Scotland. Each year, organisations and individuals across Scotland organise events to mark Demystifying Death Week. All kinds of events take place, from death cafes to film nights, exhibitions to craft workshops, seminars to lunches. Would you like to be involved with this year's Demystifying Death Week? Find out more and get involved here.

Small Grants Scheme

A small grants fund has been set up to support organisations to put on events as part of Demystifying Death Week.

Good Life, Good Death Good Grief is seeking applications of up to £250 from people who want to put on an event during DD Week. In previous years, events have included lunchtime get-togethers, information stands, film screenings, workshops, discussion groups, planning sessions, crematorium tours, craft sessions, lectures, art exhibitions, and death cafes.

The deadline for receipt of completed applications is 12pm on Wednesday 15 March 2023. More information including an application form is available here: DD Week Small Grants

Demystifying Death Awards

We're inviting nominations for the Demystifying Death Awards, recognising pioneering work that shines a light on death, dying and bereavement in Scotland.

The awards are designed to celebrate those working to make Scotland a place where everyone can help when someone is caring, dying and grieving. The award categories are:

  • Inspiring Community
  • Promoting Planning
  • Creative Innovation
  • Progressive Policy
  • Increasing Understanding
  • Celebrity Champion

Nominations can be for an individual or organisation or specific project or piece of work. Awards will be made for work that is based in Scotland or has had an impact in Scotland. Please send your nominations to by Friday 3rd March. More information is available here: Demystifying Death Awards

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Academic and Research

Research into anticipatory medications

A recently published article by Dr Ben Bowers explores the complexities of making anticipatory medications available for people nearing the end of life at home, following publication of new research which indicates that the presence of of anticipatory medications could cause distress as well as comfort. Read the full article here.

Dying well at home: commissioning quality end-of-life care

The Kings Fund have published Dying well at home: commissioning quality end of life care, which explores:

  • What do we know about the quality of end-of-life care for people who die at home, and any inequalities experienced by particular groups in the population, before and during the pandemic?   
  • What are NHS and social care commissioners in England doing to measure and assure the quality of end-of-life care for people who die at home, including any inequalities experienced by particular groups in the population?   
  • What are the implications of our findings for national bodies and local systems?

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Changes to SPPC Council

We are pleased to welcome Claire O'Neill to the SPPC Council. Claire is Lead Nurse/CSM Palliative Care, NHS Greater Glasgow & Clyde. Donald Macaskill and Bridget Johnson recently completed their terms on Council and we thank them for the huge contribution they've made to the work of SPPC during that time.

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Other News

Hospice UK report: End of life care for trans and gender diverse communities

Hospice UK have published a new report based on first-hand research with the trans and gender diverse community and those working in end of life care. The report highlights challenges and barriers in end of life care and sets out recommendations for what hospices and palliative care professionals can do to make end of life care more equal and accessible for everyone. Read the full report here.

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Courses and Events

Save the Date - SPPC Conference 2023

The next Scottish Partnership for Palliative Care Annual Conference will take place on 22 November 2023.

International Advanced European Bioethics course - "Suffering, Death and Palliative Care"

Organised by the Healthcare Ethics, IQ healthcare department of Radboud University medical centre, Nijmegen, the Netherlands. 21-24 March 2023, Nijmegen, the Netherlands. For more information, visit the course website.

Improving End of Life Care for people with Cardiovascular Disease & Heart Failure - online conference

Organised by Healthcare Conferences UK. 22 March 2023, online. For more information and to register, visit the website or email

Effective Non Medical Prescribing in End of Life Care - online conference

Organised by Healthcare Conferences UK. 23 March 2023, online. For further information and to book your place, visit the website or email

Namaste Care Online Training Course Dates for 2023

Organised by Prince & Princess of Wales Hospice and Ayrshire Hospice. 6 April and 4 May or 3 October and 7 November 2023, online. More information is available here.

Controlled Drugs: Ensuring the Safer Management, Diversion & Abuse, Prescribing and Use - online conference

Organised by Healthcare Conferences UK. 27 April 2023, online. For more information and to register, visit the website or email

Palliative Outcome Scale (POS + IPOS) Workshop

Organised by the Cicely Saunders Institute at King’s College London and the Hull York Medical School. 16-17 May 2023. More information is available here: weblink.

Association for Continence Advice (ACA) Annual Conference and Exhibition

Organised by the ACA Conference Organising Group. 15 and 16 May 2023, at the National Conference Centre in Birmingham. For more information and to register, visit the website.

Compassionate Cities: Igniting Community

Organised by Compassionate Communities UK. 10-11 July, Birmingham. More information is available here: weblink.

2023 Global Ageing Network Biennial Conference

Organised in partnership with Scottish Care and the National Care Forum. 7-8 September 2023, Glasgow. More information and early-bird registration is available at the conference website.

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