Palliative and end of life care

Our specialist palliative care service aims to relieve complex and distressing symptoms caused by advanced, progressive disease – enabling patients to have the best possible quality of life.

How does the service work?

Initial contact with you is usually made by one of the palliative care specialist nurses who will assess and discuss with you the symptoms and problems you are experiencing. The specialist nurse will then put forward recommendations to the team looking after you on the ward, and involve the consultant in palliative medicine as necessary.

In preparation for your discharge from hospital, the clinical nurse specialist may discuss possible home visits with you. If you agree and accept, the clinical nurse specialist will contact the community palliative care team at St. Margaret’s Hospice, who will arrange home visits so that your symptoms continue to be monitored, and ongoing support for you and your family is provided.

They may also discuss the addition of your details to the ePaCCs system. This is an electronic palliative care register that shares basic clinical information with your GP, district nursing service, community palliative care team and the out of hours services such as the ambulance service. This will ensure your wishes are known to these services if you need to contact them, thus preventing re-admission to hospital if this is something you do not want to happen in the future; and also including details on your preferred place of care/death.

Service leadership

The palliative care team consists of nurses and doctors who have completed specialist training to deal with difficult symptoms such as pain, nausea, breathlessness and anxiety. You may be referred to us by the doctor or nurse looking after you, or you or your family may also request to see us.

Day to day responsibility and leadership of the service rests with the clinical nurse specialist and palliative care and end of life nurses.

The palliative care service is operational Monday to Friday from 09:00-17:00.