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Written Question
Palliative Care: Drugs
Friday 7th July 2023

Asked by: Chris Clarkson (Conservative - Heywood and Middleton)

Question to the Department of Health and Social Care:

To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, if he will take steps to provide all (a) hospice patients and (b) next of kin with written guidance on the possible (i) effects and (ii) outcomes of medications used in end-of-life care.

Answered by Helen Whately - Minister of State (Department of Health and Social Care)

The National Institute for Health and Care Excellence (NICE) has published guidelines on end of life care for adults and care of dying adults in the last days of life. This guidance covers topics such as communication, shared decision-making, and pharmacological interventions.

Ensuring patients, and those important to them, are fully informed regarding their care, including medications, is the responsibility of individual staff and provider organisations. NICE guidance and quality standards, the Ambitions Framework, NHS England’s Palliative and End of Life Care Statutory Guidance for Integrated Care Boards and Care Quality Commission inspection key lines of enquiry all support this by emphasising the needs for individualised care and communication. NHS England also published an Accessible Information Standard to promote the provision of information in a way that meets the needs of each individual.