END-OF-LIFE CARE IN ONTARIO NEEDS A LOT OF ATTENTION: HEALTH QUALITY ONTARIO REPORT

Dec 15, 2014

By Jane Brown

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End-of-life care is the focus of a new report which aims to give the Ontario government a framework to improve palliative treatment in this province.

Issued by Health Quality Ontario, the advisory agency’s report reveals that only 30 percent of people with chronic illnesses in the province get to die in the gentle and compassionate surroundings of a hospice.  It says far too many pass away in emergency wards or intensive care units, where a good death isn’t always the emphasis.

The report’s authors reviewed evidence on best practices and came up with a number of recommendations.  These include having conversations about death with patients earlier in their treatment, training health practitioners to be more familiar with end-of-life care, providing better support for informal caregivers and offering more palliative care at home instead of in the hospital.

The auditor general estimated Ontario needs as many as 809 hospice beds to meet demand.  The province currently has 271.

This end-of-life care report will be the first topic on the New AM 740’s Goldhawk Fights Back after the 11am news today.

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