The Department of Health has announced that it is to hold a review looking at how the Liverpool Care Pathway for Dying Patients (LCP) is being used in practice.
The LCP is internationally recognised as best practice in care in the final days and hours of life, and is recommended in the department’s End of Life Care Strategy. However the LCP has been criticised recently in the media with claims of poor care for people at the end of life and a number of serious accusations about the pathway and its implementation.
The review is to be chaired by crossbench peer Baroness Julia Neuberger and will examine various elements of the LCP, including:
- the experience and opinions of patients and families
- the experience and opinions of health professionals
- hospital complaints
- local payments made to hospitals in respect of the LCP, and
- the literature about benefits and limitations of the LCP.
Following this work, the review will make recommendations about what, if any, changes are needed to improve care, to ensure that patients are always treated with dignity and that, wherever possible, they are involved in decisions about their care, and that carers and families are always involved in the decision-making process.
The contact address for the review is LiverpoolCarePathwayReview@dh.gsi.gov.uk