Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

End-stage dementia patients deserve the same access to palliative care as people with cancer

13.05.2008
There is an urgent need to improve end-of-life care for older people in the final stages of dementia, according to an international review published in the May issue of Journal of Clinical Nursing.

“We must act now to stop people with dementia from suffering from protracted, potentially uncomfortable and undignified deaths” says Jan Draper, Professor of Nursing for The Open University, UK.

“The management of dementia is becoming a major international public health concern because people are living longer which means that more people are likely to develop this disease.”

Professor Draper teamed up with Deborah Birch, a Clinical Nurse Specialist working with older people in Lincoln,UK, to review 10 years of published research. They carried out a detailed analysis of 29 studies, from the USA, UK, Canada, Israel, Switzerland, Ireland, the Netherlands, Sweden and Finland.

“Our review has reinforced the importance of providing appropriate palliative care to individuals suffering from end-stage dementia and clearly identified some of the barriers to extending such provision” says Professor Draper.

“These include concerns that such an expansion might lead to skills and funding shortages and, in turn, compromise the ability of existing palliative care teams to provide care to cancer patients, who tend to be the main recipients of this kind of care.

“We believe that clinicians and patient groups caring for patients with advanced dementia need to work together with specialist palliative care providers and health commissioners to develop, fund and evaluate appropriate cost-effective services that meet the needs of both patients and their families.

“If this is achieved, these improvements have the potential to increase people’s quality of life and reduce the amount of time they spend in acute hospitals.”

Birch and Draper say that the findings of their review indicate a number of ways that colleagues across healthcare disciplines can work together to enhance the quality of care they provide older people in the end stages of dementia. These include:

• Communicating the diagnosis of dementia in a sensitive way and indicating, as clearly as possible, how the disease is likely to progress.

• Acknowledging the potential influence that the individual beliefs and values of the healthcare team - such as difficult drug and treatment decisions - may have on the care provided.

• Improving and providing timely and accurate communication about key issues, including the role of advanced directives, such as living wills or do not resuscitate orders.

• Reconsidering aggressive medical treatments that have limited benefits and may cause further discomfort to dying patients.

• Encouraging professionals, carers and, where possible, patients to work together to plan appropriate care tailored to the needs of the individual.

• Reinforcing the need for multi-disciplinary ways of working.

• Reconsidering the most appropriate place to deliver end-of-life care.

• Acknowledging the right of all older people dying from end-stage dementia to have access to high-quality specialist palliative care services.

“Palliative care services are used to providing care for cancer patients, but high-quality care for people with end-stage dementia does not appear to be given the same priority” says Professor Draper.

“In the UK, for example, it has been a relatively neglected topic in relation to policy, planning, practice development and training.

“Population trends suggest that life expectancy is increasing and this will mean that more people are at risk of developing dementia, which affects one in 1,000 people under 65 but rises to one in five once people are over 85.

“Dementia is a progressive terminal illness for which there is currently no cure and patients dying from the disease have significant healthcare needs.

“Despite this, they are often denied the palliative care services that could improve their comfort and quality of life.”

Annette Whibley | alfa
Further information:
http://www.blackwellpublishing.com/jcn

More articles from Health and Medicine:

nachricht Researchers release the brakes on the immune system
18.10.2017 | Rheinische Friedrich-Wilhelms-Universität Bonn

nachricht Norovirus evades immune system by hiding out in rare gut cells
12.10.2017 | University of Pennsylvania School of Medicine

All articles from Health and Medicine >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:

Im Focus: Neutron star merger directly observed for the first time

University of Maryland researchers contribute to historic detection of gravitational waves and light created by event

On August 17, 2017, at 12:41:04 UTC, scientists made the first direct observation of a merger between two neutron stars--the dense, collapsed cores that remain...

Im Focus: Breaking: the first light from two neutron stars merging

Seven new papers describe the first-ever detection of light from a gravitational wave source. The event, caused by two neutron stars colliding and merging together, was dubbed GW170817 because it sent ripples through space-time that reached Earth on 2017 August 17. Around the world, hundreds of excited astronomers mobilized quickly and were able to observe the event using numerous telescopes, providing a wealth of new data.

Previous detections of gravitational waves have all involved the merger of two black holes, a feat that won the 2017 Nobel Prize in Physics earlier this month....

Im Focus: Smart sensors for efficient processes

Material defects in end products can quickly result in failures in many areas of industry, and have a massive impact on the safe use of their products. This is why, in the field of quality assurance, intelligent, nondestructive sensor systems play a key role. They allow testing components and parts in a rapid and cost-efficient manner without destroying the actual product or changing its surface. Experts from the Fraunhofer IZFP in Saarbrücken will be presenting two exhibits at the Blechexpo in Stuttgart from 7–10 November 2017 that allow fast, reliable, and automated characterization of materials and detection of defects (Hall 5, Booth 5306).

When quality testing uses time-consuming destructive test methods, it can result in enormous costs due to damaging or destroying the products. And given that...

Im Focus: Cold molecules on collision course

Using a new cooling technique MPQ scientists succeed at observing collisions in a dense beam of cold and slow dipolar molecules.

How do chemical reactions proceed at extremely low temperatures? The answer requires the investigation of molecular samples that are cold, dense, and slow at...

Im Focus: Shrinking the proton again!

Scientists from the Max Planck Institute of Quantum Optics, using high precision laser spectroscopy of atomic hydrogen, confirm the surprisingly small value of the proton radius determined from muonic hydrogen.

It was one of the breakthroughs of the year 2010: Laser spectroscopy of muonic hydrogen resulted in a value for the proton charge radius that was significantly...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

Event News

ASEAN Member States discuss the future role of renewable energy

17.10.2017 | Event News

World Health Summit 2017: International experts set the course for the future of Global Health

10.10.2017 | Event News

Climate Engineering Conference 2017 Opens in Berlin

10.10.2017 | Event News

 
Latest News

Electrode materials from the microwave oven

19.10.2017 | Materials Sciences

New material for digital memories of the future

19.10.2017 | Materials Sciences

Physics boosts artificial intelligence methods

19.10.2017 | Physics and Astronomy

VideoLinks
B2B-VideoLinks
More VideoLinks >>>