Public Health Palliative Care training for Specialist Registrars and MDT’s

Categories: Community Engagement and Education.

Only five percent of care is carried out by professionals at the end of someone’s life, but clinicians should harness the potential of the 95%, according to Compassionate Communities UK (CCUK).

The family, friends and community networks represented by the 95% can be a valuable part of patient care alongside the clinical care provided, according to CCUK director Dr Julian Abel.

“Sometimes palliative and end of life services don’t involve or engage with the circles of care around a dying person, leaving them or their relatives and friends without a role,” he said.

“But by exploring and better understanding the impact of incorporating these supportive networks and relationships into routine clinical care, the quality and experience of end of life care can be significantly improved.”

In response to this need, CCUK has developed a training programme which explores a public health approach to palliative care, covering health promotion traditions including practice models, community development, social ecology, health policy, service redesign and end of life literacy.

Conceptually health promotion is a balance between illness and disease alongside health and wellbeing. Palliative Care training has traditionally focused more on illness and disease. This programme adds to that knowledge with health promotion principles.

There are two courses, the first targeted at specialist registrars, which meets the requirements for mandatory education, and the second for the palliative multi-disciplinary team.  For members of the multi-disciplinary team, there is an option for key roles such as Clinical Director, Medical Director, Social Worker, Occupational Therapist to attend together to learn and develop as a team or separately to then cascade knowledge locally.

Feedback from attendees of the programme has been incredibly positive, according to Dr Abel.

“One recent delegate said she had been working with a patient with complex needs who wanted to return home to die,” he said.

“Thanks to the training programme she was able to explore the support network around the patient, through listening and questioning and discovered family members who had experience of end of life care.

“The patient was discharged to home with a syringe driver and the support of his family network, along with a package of care.”

Students who have completed the course may go onto be a part of implementing change across the system via the Foundation Programme in Compassionate Cities OR more in depth work internally via the  Public Health Palliative Care Hospice Transformation programme.

The course supports exploration, theory and practice to support participants in their work.  The course is delivered by Dr Abel, along with key leads within the field of public health palliative care.

The format of the course includes a full training day, followed by a series of interactive webinars.  There is then a follow-up workshop to consider the practical application of public health palliative care skills.

The course is based on population health and addresses longstanding issues of equity, diversity and inclusion which have remained largely unaddressed over the last decades.  For students particularly interested in the issue of equity, next steps might be the Certificate in Equity, Diversity and Inclusion for Palliative and End of Life Care.

Full details of the courses, including the session content and key dates as well as booking information are available here:

Public Health Palliative Care Training for Specialist Registrars Tickets, Thu 14 Sep 2023 at 09:00 | Eventbrite



Public Health Palliative Care Training for members of the MDT Tickets, Thu 21 Sep 2023 at 09:00 | Eventbrite


Who delivers the training?

Professor Allan Kellehear – Clinical Professor, University of Vermont, USA

Dr Julian Abel – Director, Compassionate Communities UK

Dr Libby Sallnow, Consultant in Palliative Medicine, Camden, Islington ELiPSe and

UCLH & HCA Palliative Care Service

Dr Joseph Sawyer, SpR Palliative Care and PhD candidate, UCLH

Dr Kerrie Noonan, Director, Death Literacy Institute, Australia


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