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End of life care not acceptable in Leicestershire and Rutland

Posted in: Medical Negligence 

A recent report looking into the end of life care provided to patients in Leicestershire and Rutland has made some worrying findings. It was found that one in five patients who died in Leicestershire and Rutland received a substandard, and even “unacceptable”, level of care. The report took into account 381 cases of patients that received end of life care, with some having even been resuscitated when they did not want to be. It was also found that numerous patients were taken into hospital despite the fact that they specifically wanted to die at home.

Following the publication of the report, NHS bosses apologised for “letting people down”. The report focused on patients that received end of life care between March 2012 and June 2013. This encompassed hospitals, social services and GPs. It was found that 23% of the involved patients received an “unacceptable” level of care – a total of 89 patients. 

Discuss plans at an earlier stage

The authors of the report, Ron Hsu and Lucy Douglas-Pannett, said: “There was evidence of fractured care, dysfunctional processes and lack of joined-up thinking throughout the NHS in Leicester, Leicestershire and Rutland.

GP chair of West Leicestershire NHS Clinical Commissioning Group, Prof Mayur Lakhan, has written to many families to apologise for the service’s failings. He said that records were being passed around hospitals, GPs and social services for patients receiving end of life care. He also stressed that the Group is going to encourage doctors and nurses to discuss care plans with their patients “at a much earlier stage” to ensure that all patient preferences are met.

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