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Lack of strategies for end-of-life care

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Only 38 (46 per cent) of 83 newly-created Health and Wellbeing Boards with public strategies have considered the needs of dying people, the National Council for Palliative Care (NCPC) has found.

Its report What about end of life care: Mapping England's Health and Wellbeing Boards' vision for dying people, states that while some boards have set out in their strategies how they will improve end-of-life care many others have failed to do so.

The report also raises concerns that many of the boards, established by local authorities as part of the government's health reforms, have not made their strategy public.

Eve Richardson, chief executive of NCPC and the Dying Matters coalition, said: 'We want to encourage these boards to have a public debate about the priorities for good end of live care and support.'

The news comes as the Office for National Statistics exposed variations in quality of care; dignity and respect shown by staff; fulfilment of patient preferences; and support for families and carers, across England. These measures were all rated in the top 20 per cent, in the South West region while the London region received the poorest ratings across all domains.

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