People in Lichfield and Burntwood urged to help improve end of life care

People in Lichfield and Burntwood are being asked for their views on end of life care in the area.

A review by Healthwatch Staffordshire of the current services and facilities is looking for those with experience of the system to help shape any recommendations for improvement.

Jan Sensier, chief executive of Engaging Communities Staffordshire

Jan Sensier, chief executive of Engaging Communities Staffordshire

Jan Sensier, chief executive of Engaging Communities Staffordshire, which delivers the Healthwatch programme, said that discussing the issue was crucial to highlighting any issues.

“We appreciate that the route towards the end of someone’s life is a sensitive and emotive subject and can be a difficult thing to talk about,” she said. “But end-of-life care was identified by the public as one of our main priorities this year and we’re scoping a project which will include a reference group to examine the state of services in Staffordshire.

“We want patients, carers and their relatives to tell us about their experiences of the current services, whether they’re good or bad.

“We’re particularly interested in hearing opinions about how the system could be improved and how to achieve the aim of most of those people affected, which is to die in their own homes or normal place of residence.”

Healthwatch is keen to gather as many views as possible ahead of the first meeting of the group in May.

People wanting to take part can call 0800 051 8371 or email enquiries@healthwatchstaffordshire.co.uk.

The initiative comes on the back of a nationwide review of end-of-life care which found most hospitals in the UK are failing to provide face-to-face palliative specialists around the clock.

The report, commissioned by NHS England, found only 16 of 142 hospital sites in England have experts available at all times.

A NHS England spokesperson said: “There are clear variations in the support and services received across the UK and there are areas where improvements must continue to be made.”

Founder of LichfieldLive and editor of the site.
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