Trinity has welcomed a report on how heart failure patients currently access specialist end of life care. More than 60,000 people die of heart failure each year in the UK, but they form only around four per cent of people supported by specialist palliative care and hospice teams, according to the report by Hospice UK and the British Heart Foundation, in collaboration with the University of Hull.
The report highlights how people living with advanced heart failure can benefit from personalised palliative care to help manage their symptoms, plan for the future and vastly improve wellbeing in their final months, but few are being referred by GPs and hospital teams for specialist care provided by hospices and hospital palliative care teams.
Dr Susan Salt, Medical Director at Trinity says: “We welcome the national report around the palliative care needs of heart failure patients. We continually strive to ensure that people who need palliative and end of life care across the Fylde Coast get the services they need and we provide education and training to our colleagues in both General Practice and the hospital about how to manage the common symptoms people with heart failure experience as they become less well.
“We also work with the heart failure clinical nurse specialists and matrons across the area and have made significant inroads into providing more support to heart failure patients, but there is much more still to do.”
Trinity Hospice caters for patients with a range of conditions – though some people still only associate hospice care with cancer. Over 40% of patients attending Trinity’s Day Therapy Unit have a non-cancer diagnosis, and many of them have heart failure.