PARLIAMENT: NATIONAL STRATEGY NEEDED FOR END-OF-LIFE CARE

By Paul Cassidy

Jackie Baillie MSP has backed calls for improved end-of-life and palliative care as new research shows show that by 2040, 95% of people who die in Scotland may need additional support in their care.

Marie Curie Scotland says another 60,000 people are projected to be dying with a terminal condition by 2040 – with an increase in people dying in the community rather than hospital – and has urged end of life care to be made a priority for the Scottish Government with a new national strategy.

Jackie Baillie has said a rethink of how palliative care is delivered is urgently needed and that any national strategy must address the changing face of care. 

Ms Baillie MSP for Dumbarton, Vale of Leven, Helensburgh and Lomond, pictured left,  said:  “The pandemic has really driven home the value of end-of -life care, and the additional pressures families and carers are under as they struggle with lockdown restrictions or limits on visiting relatives in care homes or hospitals.

“We urgently need a rethink of how best to manage palliative care. People at the end of their lives are entitled to proper care and dignity and should not be in distress.

“A national strategy will help ensure that those living with and dying from terminal illness will get the support they need to live as comfortably as they can with the time they have left.”

A spokesperson for the Catholic Church said:  “A National Strategy for end-of-life care is a sensible and reasonable proposal. The value of end-of -life care, has never been clearer than in the current pandemic.

“High-quality palliative care should be available to everyone who needs it. The alleviation of suffering should be a central goal of a compassionate society, ensuring that proper care and dignity are delivered to those nearing the end of their life.”

An elderly person in care and (top) fighting for life in an intensive care unit.

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